Of all the distinguished and legendary Kiwi bands to have earned their place in the Hall Of Fame, Supergroove have an advantage in one way best summed up by a three letter word with an exclamation mark on the end: Fun! The seven-piece funk rock ensemble were (and are) NZ’s primo party band, and when they emerged with their first recordings in 1992, they must have seemed like a natural palliative to the depressive grind of the then-popular grunge scene. There are lots of reasons to celebrate Supergroove, including their effortless blend of rock, funk, rap, soul and horny jazz licks around the edge. They also introduced the smooth croon of Che Fu (then known as Che Ness) who went on to superstar solo success, and the hyperactive moves of frontman Karl Steven, who more recently formed another great fun group, The Drab Doo Riffs.
One of the biggest NZ acts of the ‘90s, they hit the big time in 1993 with the unforgettable number 1 single, “Can’t Get Enough”, and followed it with the number 1 album Traction in 1994. They were to dominate the 1995 New Zealand Music Awards by winning Best Group, Album Of The Year, Best Video and Best Producer, but sadly, by 1997 tour fatigue led to animosity in the ranks, and Supergroove split. But that’s not all! Time seemed to have resolved their differences, and the group reunited in 2007, touring internationally as support for Crowded House, and appearing at several festivals during the next two years. While the group appears to be finished as a creative entity, Supergroove is remembered with endless affection for the shot of energy, fun and excitement they injected into the local scene.
Whilst Supergroove’s members have all gone on to other creative projects – both musical and non-musical – the group has now joined the pantheon of legendary Kiwi music stars reforming to play regular summer tours to ecstatic fans around the country.
Nick Atkinson (saxophone) • Che Fu (vocals) • Ian Jones (drums) • Joe Lonie (bass) • Paul Russell (drums) • Ben Sciascia (guitar) • Tim Stewart (trumpet) • Karl Steven (vocals).