Stuff NZ Newspapers



It has been 15 years since Boh Runga started her eponymous jewellery label. To celebrate, Runga has released Rocksteady, a new range of earrings, bracelets and necklaces featuring coloured stones. She has also partnered with hip-hop DJ P-Money to release a cover of the Aretha Franklin classic, Rock Steady. This summer Runga, 52, will be back playing at music festivals with her band of more than 20 years, stellar*. She lives on a lifestyle block in Kumeū, Auckland, with her musician partner Troy McKubre and their two dogs, Leroy Brown and Toby Malone. I WISH, 10 YEARS AGO, I’D KNOWN... That I wanted to live in the country. We recently moved to a 1.5 hectare rural property, which we absolutely love. We tried to make the move from the city five years ago but had too much going on then. Three months ago we finally managed to buy a house in Kumeū, and it’s magical being surrounded by nature and open spaces. The dogs love it too. I’m not sure I could go back to city living. I WISH I COULD SWAP LIVES WITH… A falcon or a similar kind of bird. I went to Wingspan in Rotorua a few years back and really enjoyed learning about the raptors there. Just for one day, it would be nice to be a bird, lazily floating on a gentle thermal air current, maybe seeing how close I could get to the treetops as I skimmed along at a dizzying speed. I’d enjoy the sun on my back and the view from high in the sky. I WISH, EVERY DAY I COULD EAT... Food cooked by someone else! Both Troy and I love to eat and we share the cooking. We have a fantastic oven in the new house that we really need to start using more. It takes time and brainpower to find new recipes but thanks to the move and work we haven’t got round to it. I’m hoping we can get some time over summer to experiment with new flavours and recipes. I WISH I COULD LIVE IN... The moment. It’s good to plan ahead but being present in the moment, enjoying where you’re at right now, is something I think we could all benefit from. If you’re talking actual physical places, I’m not that keen on living anywhere else but New Zealand. I’ve travelled a lot and Paris for a few months sounds nice, but I’m very happy and grateful to live where I am now. THE SOUND I NEVER WANT TO HEAR AGAIN… The “knocking” sound you get with old cars. I have a 1970 Pontiac Coupe and a 1993 Nissan Patrol, which are a bit impractical in today’s world but they’re also really beautiful. It does mean they can make all sorts of worrying noises. I’ll be driving along and hear a knocking sound and think, that’s going to cost me a lot of money. I WISH NZ WAS MORE… Accessible to the rest of the world. What is our strength is also our weakness. New Zealand’s isolation means we are quite adventurous and ground-breaking in our thinking and creativity, plus we have the ability to have a close relationship to our natural surroundings if we choose to. But unfortunately because of our small size and where we are on the globe, we don’t have a great deal of choice or competition in a lot of different services the way that people in other countries take for granted.