French singer-songwriter Franck Monnet who now calls Paekākāriki home, is making his New Zealand Festival debut at CubaDupa next month.
Falling in love which lead him to New Zealand in 2010, Franck has been here ever since, but continues to write and make music in his native tongue.
Joining with double bass player Tim Jaray and percussionist Andreas Lepper, together the trio will be performing on Hannah's Courtyard Stage alongside an array of world music.
Franck's performance is being sponsored by the French Embassy after the artist they were bringing over was not able to come due to Covid-19 restrictions.
"After the person they were going to bring over couldn't come, I guess they heard my music and invited me to play instead," Franck said.
"My music will be an interesting addition to the festival."
Festival director Gerry Paul said, "After a tough year, CubaDupa 2021 will be just the tonic we all need.
"The streets will be alive with surprises around every corner and our most ambitious, most creative and most diverse programme ever.
The programme that has been pulled together by our creative community is astronomical.
"We feel very privileged to be in a position to be able to hold a festival, Aotearoa is the envy of the world right now."
Writing and recording five albums, Franck writes all his music in French despite having been in New Zealand for the last 10 years.
His latest album, released in 2014 was in French but named after Waimarama Beach in the Hawke's Bay.
Describing his music as pop-folk, Franck said, "My music is rich in melodies, I have crafty lyrics and strange structure.
"But I have released five records - I was good enough to do more than one."
When asked why he hasn't strayed away from writing in his native tongue, Franck said, "I prefer doing what I'm good at and what I know.
"I can trust that. I don't want to fake it."
Being a songwriter, the majority of the songs Franck writes are for other artists, meaning that he has not done much performing since moving to New Zealand.
Although he is nervous, Franck said, "I haven't done much performing in New Zealand, but I'm going to love it.
"The three of us have a few more practises to go before we perform because some of the songs have complicated structures and we want to be tight.
"We're very lucky to be able to perform at a big festival like CubaDupa at the moment.
"We're especially lucky to be on the coast, here in Paekākāriki, in a village of artists.
"I feel very at home here."
CubaDupa is held on the weekend of March 27-28, throughout the Cuba Street Precinct in Wellington. For latest details of artists, vendors and stages visit www.cubadupa.co.nz.