A Taranaki cover band from the 1960s-1980s is the inspiration behind a new exhibition.
Kount Five Plus Two: Pop Culture in Retro Taranaki 1966-1983 opens at New Plymouth District Council’s (NPDC) Puke Ariki Museum on Saturday, December 9.
The exhibition pays tribute to Kount Five Plus Two, a seven-member band that became a symbol of the local music scene, playing at dances, cabarets and hotels across the region over its 17-year career.
Kount Five Plus Two was formed in Stratford and featured two female and five male performers, with John Paki Paki on lead vocals.
John still lives in Taranaki and will be present at the exhibition’s opening night.
Visitors can relive the music, the fashion and the memories of the era, when the band were regular performers at Taranaki dance halls, Ōpunake Mardi Gras, the Bowl of Brooklands and the Westown Motor Hotel – making them a cornerstone of Taranaki’s entertainment landscape.
In the 1960s they played throughout New Zealand, and shared the stage with high-profile acts when they toured Taranaki, including the late Ray Columbus.
NPDC cultural experiences manager Zara Stanhope says the exhibition revisits the moments that shaped Taranaki’s cultural landscape.
“For those who may have gone to one of the band’s shows, this will be a reflective journey back to a cultural moment full of fond memories, and for others, a chance to discover what was a golden age for Aotearoa New Zealand and the local music scene.”
The exhibition features photos of the band’s performances and collaborations over the years. There will be retro clothing to try on and a lit-up dance floor.
What: Kount Five Plus Two: Pop Culture in Retro Taranaki 1966-1983
When: December 9 - June 8, 2024
Where: Temporary Gallery on the ground floor of the Puke Ariki Museum, New Plymouth
Cost: Free entry