Bay of Plenty musicians are among those named as finalists in this year's New Zealand Music Awards.

The award finalists were announced at a ceremony in Auckland on Wednesday night with former Rotorua resident Seth Haapu, Te Arawa's Ria Hall and Whakatane's Whirimako Black named.

Haapu is nominated in the best male solo artist category and is up against Bulletproof and Unknown Metal Orchestra.

The former Rotorua Boys High School student and top-30 Australian Idol finalist released his self-titled debut album last year which he described as bubble-gum pop.


Hall and Black are both finalists in the best Maori album category. Hall was nominated for her album Ria Hall and Black for her album with Richard Nunns called Te More.

Hall and Black are up against Upper Hutt Posse with their album Declaration of Resistance.

The New Zealand Music Awards ceremony on November 1 at Vector Arena will be presented by comedian Ben Boyce and television host Shannon Ryan.

As well as the winners of the various categories being announced, the awards for highest-selling single and album, radio airplay record of the year, and international achievement will be presented.

Kimbra, Gin Wigmore, The Black Seeds, Annah Mac, Six60, and Home Brew will be playing live and there will be a special tribute to Legacy Award recipients Toy Love.

The awards will be screened on Four at 8.30pm on November 1, preceded by a red-carpet special hosted by comedian and writer Guy Williams and Four's "pop culture chick" Sharyn Wakefield.

Tickets cost $25 and can be bought from

For a full list of finalists visit