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Songs about loving life in the midst of teenage angst, the adventures of worms and a tiny pony with a lofty goal have won the hearts of judges at the 2020 Children's Music Awards.

Finalists for the awards celebrating music written for kids, which will take place at a child-friendly virtual event later this month, were announced today.

Among the finalists was Anika Moa, who, along with Captain Festus McBoyle and Chris Sanders, is vying for Record Music NZ Te Kaipuoro Waiata Tamariki Toa / Best Children's Music Artist.

Finalists were also named in the APRA Best Children's Song and NZ On Air Best Children's Music Video categories.

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Anika Moa is vying for the Best Children's Artist award. Photo / Andrew Warner
Anika Moa is vying for the Best Children's Artist award. Photo / Andrew Warner

A child's message to her future, teenage self, I Love LIfe, written by Kath Bee and Doug Stenhouse, and featuring 11-year-old Joelle Noar, is one of three finalists for best children's song.

The other two finalists are for the upbeat, te reo Māori Aro for Korimako, by Emily and Charles Looker, and Ben Sinclair and Jeremy Dillon's Tony the Tiny Pony.

Sinclair and Dillon's tune, with the video by Ned Wenlock, was also one of four finalists for NZ On Air's Best Children's Music Video.

The other finalists are Little Ripples for Read To Me, written by Emily and Sam Benge with video by Jade Oskar Harvey and Benjamin Whorwood, Tahi Tahi Tahi Ambulance Song, by Chris Sanders, and Worms, by The Nukes with video by Parry Jones and Christian Tjandrawinata.

The annual awards celebrate the storytellers, rhymers, singers and groovers who write and perform the songs which "ignite a love for music" in Kiwi kids, organisers said.

"Music universally brings a magical joy to the senses and plays an especially pivotal role in our children's lives, spinning their stories and swaying their souls."