We’ll never be royal, but we definitely can get our groove on like one this summer.

WORDS ANNA RAWHITI-CONNELL / PHOTOS SUPPLIED

Turn it up, Harry!” That’s the advice Shapeshifter’s P-Digsss, or Diggy as he’s known, had for Prince Harry when the royal was gifted two of the band’s albums by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern during his recent New Zealand tour.

As well as knowing royalty owns their albums, Shapeshifter also has the honour of being ‘the sound of New Zealand summer’ and will kick off one of the country’s favourite events,  Bay Dreams, when they play at the festival Pre-Party on New Year’s Day with UK electronic duo Chase & Status, Miami rapper Smokepurpp and US hip-hop legend Grandmaster Flash.

Shapeshifter blend soul, jazz and drum and bass into a heady and delicious mix. They’re charismatic on stage, and with sound engineer and Tauranga local Tiki Taane on board, they produce a massive outdoor sound.

What fans might not know is that many of their beloved bass-heavy hits are written in winter. “We sit on the cold, wet, grey days and dream of summer daze,” says Diggy.

Shapeshifter enthusiasts stand to benefit from all that winter graft, with Diggy promising loads of concentrated bass frequencies that will make it near impossible not to dance. His advice to Bay Dreams Pre-Party goers? “Don’t fight it.”

As summer becomes more of a balmy reality than a dream, Diggy’s looking forward to the bounty of the Bay of Plenty. When asked what his favourite thing is about playing in this region, he’s emphatic: “Them apples, baby. Juicy-as apples.”

SHAPESHIFTER LIVE
What: Bay Dreams Pre-Party
When: January 1
Where: ASB Baypark Stadium, Mt Maunganui

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