Music Feeds’ Love Letter to a Record series asks artists to reflect on their relationship with the music they love and share stories about how it has influenced their lives. Here, Muroki shares his love for Nick Hakim’s ‘Roller Skates’ (2017).

Muroki’s second EP, Heading East, combines elements of indie, pop, reggae and global music. The 21-year-old Aotearoa artist will launch the EP with a run of headline shows around Australia this month, as well as a slot at the Wanderer Festival. Muroki describes the six-song Heading East as representing “a few moments and experiences I’ve had over the past three years.”

Muroki’s Love Letter to Nick Hakim’s ‘Roller Skates’

The first time I heard ‘Roller Skates’, I was sixteen years old sitting at the end of my bed in the basement of my friend’s parents’ house. This basement was where I became a recording artist, and this song is what started that. I was just getting into music production, but I was convinced the music I was making needed vocals in order to connect. ‘Roller Skates’ was the record that inspired me to sing and turn my instrumentals into songs.

Nick Hakim had the perfect mix of soul and spaciness in his production and the way he manipulated his vocals. At the time I could never really make out a lot of what he was saying in his music, but the melodies said enough. ‘Roller Skates’ inspired me to use my voice like an instrument, creating top lines rather than sharing poetry.

After hearing ‘Roller Skates’, I became completely infatuated with the rest of his catalogue. I used to smoke marijuana in a spa pool for hours, only listening to Nick Hakim. The heat of the green and the sweat of the steam turned it into this psychedelic experience, full of inspiration and appreciation for this beautiful music.

In the midst of all this green and steam, I released my first ever body of work, titled Digi Town and the Boogie Boys, a four track psych-soul EP made with my friend Lennox Reynolds under the name Cloak Bay. ‘Roller Skates’ was the compass that started me in the right direction to recording and releasing my music. If it wasn’t for this song, I wouldn’t be where I am today and for that I am grateful.

Muroki – ‘Find Me’

Further Reading

Muroki Announces Debut Headline Australian Tour

Love Letter to a Record: Coterie on The Beatles’ ‘Here Comes the Sun’

Luke Sital-Singh: “I’m Always Wondering What It All Means to Be Human”

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