New Zealand: Zim-born musician ready for world domination

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After dripfeeding a string of singles over the last two years, Wellington musician Tapz says he's ready to take on the world, in what's set to be a whirlwind month for the 22-year-old.

"The beautiful thing about my journey is it's always escalating," he told Newshub from his creative hub in the hills of Wadestown.

On Sunday he's up for a MTV European Music Award for Best New Zealand Act - something he says has been the biggest indicator for how well he's doing.

"My parents have finally got to see and I suppose relate to it."

He found out he'd be nominated literally an hour after being told he hadn't made the shortlist for Breakthrough Artist at the New Zealand Music Awards. But he says he doesn't mind - born in Zimbabwe, he says his outlook is international.

"It's just I suppose a verification that I am for the kids everywhere."

And he's been handpicked by Lorde to open her Wellington gig on Saturday.

"It's great to have someone who's innovative go, 'I see you, and I see your innovation."'

Two years ago Tapz's debut single 'Killa' hit a high note on Spotify's global viral chart, leading to his first ever international show - in Russia.

"The fact that I can make music here, and then go and do a show in Russia, and the kids understand it is so special to me."

Using music to transcend language barriers is something he knows well - he moved to Upper Hutt from Zimbabwe when he was nine.

"I think that made me love everything that made me different."

He says that his status as an outsider is what's fostered his meticulous creativity.

"I always try and see my past and use that to see my future."

Blending R&B, hip-hop, and rock, Tapz has written hundreds of songs - but only releases those he feels forward his vision.

"I know that it's timeless. Now I know that it's unique."

And he doesn't like to be pigeonholed - because he says no human is just one thing.

"It allows someone who likes rock to relate to it, someone who likes R&B to relate to it. That's what I'm all about, bringing people together."

And with his debut EP Beautiful Nightmare coming out by the end of the month, chances are if you don't know who Tapz is yet, you will very soon.

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