Upper Hutt Posse “Stormy Weather”

1991-upper-hutt-posse-stormy-weatherLet’s go back to April 1991, the very first NZ On Air music video funding round. When I started 5000 Ways, I could only find two of the three videos in this found. But it turns out that four days after I posted the entry saying the “Stormy Weather” video wasn’t online, it was uploaded to YouTube by its director, Upper Hutt Posse frontman Dean Hapeta. Nice one!

“Stormy Weather” starts provocatively with footage of riot police, which I’m guessing was from the Springbok Tour protests. We discover D Word is watching this on his TV. It affects him deeply, prompting him to pick up a Sharpie and notepad and make a list of the troubles of the world.

The video is made with a green screen, with members of the Posse performing against scenes of global strife. Nuclear bombs, Bastion Point, troubles in the Middle East, the KKK, bombs over Baghdad – these are a few of my least favourite things.

But despite all this strong imagery, the song itself is laid back, with the ever-popular “Funky Drummer” drum loop and a particularly smooth chorus courtesy of Teremoana Rapley’s silky vocals. And it’s just as well. With lyrics like “I got a real strong fear, you know, that things will only get worse”, there needs to be a little sweetness.

Despite the international influences in the song, it’s a very New Zealand video and it seems a perfect choice for being one of the first three videos to receive NZ On Air funding.

Best bit: the really nice handwriting on the list of troubles

Director: Dean Hapeta
Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision

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