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Block Baby – Akatea Callaghan

Block Baby is a raw and honest track created by Akatea Callaghan, a young artist from Naenae.
It is the ultimate expression of this year’s Youth Week theme: “Our Voice Matters and You
Deserve To Be Heard”.

Listen to Block Baby, learn the backstory and read the lyrics below

Akatea Callaghan (Rekap)

"Block Baby is about where I grew up and where I've been all my life. I was just telling my story. I wouldn't have done this any other way."

- Akatea Callaghan

Where it started

Akatea is a young person from Naenae located near Wellington and has been experimenting and creating his own music for several years.

Block Baby is Akatea’s story. It is raw, vulnerable, unapologetic and an absolute banger. Inspired by rapper Jibz’s song also called Block Baby, Akatea’s song
captures a small glimpse of his journey growing up in Naenae, enduring the hardships life threw at him and becoming the exceptional tāne he is today. He presents his story as it should
be told; through his eyes and with his words.

Akatea hopes that rangatahi across Aotearoa (and beyond) will connect with his story, enjoy the track and know that their voice matters.

" When I saw him come into the centre, he was set on getting it done, he was ready and had so much intent behind his words. Naenae doesn't have a lot of resources to record and make music, so when we sold him the vision about youth week he was down. When we went to the recording studio, he was in control of everything. He knew what he wanted from verse to verse.

Wasa ( Youth Worker)

Lyrics

VERSE A:

See im a block baby, aint been out the hood lately, not much going on but when it kicks off in the hood baby it might just get crazy, see i was born in the streets, dont talk cause i want my peace, actions speak more then 
speech dont say much when im on the scene, see i just think but i dont say much, tryna find the right things i wanna say, speak my truth and i talk my talk, headed for the top, im on my way, so, let me tell you straight, about the place that i was raised, dealing drugs just to get paid got some young gz i cant save, but, who am i to be giving the blame, still stuck in my miserable ways, flip a oz, run from police, with the homies, thats how we play. Chase my cheque, keep my eyes peeled when I lace my shoes, waste no time, im chasing dreams got nothing to lose

HOOK:

see im a block baby, aint been out the hood lately, not much going on but when it kicks off in the hood baby it might just get crazy,
see im a block baby, aint been out the hood lately, not much going on but when it kicks off in the hood baby it might just get crazy,

VERSE B:

see, see, see life is a game, never fold i always kept faith, so much struggle up in my life, but, never did i ever change, change, no matter the pain, i got up again and again, i kept my smile thru the rain im that flower that grew in the shade, ay,
i remember the days, back then i had to get paid, when police was all in my face, always scared of catching my case, ay, the streets aint safe, may God forgive me for my ways, got me searching on for better days, i will never been the same, same same
but thats all we knew, take a walk up in my shoes, so much misery that I’ve seen cause im still considered a youth got caught up a couple times, some things I wish I didn’t do, take a good look in my eyes, see the pain that I’ve been put through

HOOK:

see im a block baby, aint been out the hood lately, not much going on but when it kicks off in the hood baby it might just get crazy,
see im a block baby, aint been out the hood lately, not much going on but when it kicks off in the hood baby it might just get crazy,
see i was born in the streets, dont talk cause I want my peace, actions speak more then speech, dont say much when im on the scene. 

Special thanks

Recorded by Mauriora Shelford, Mastered by JPEC, Justin Cederholm, Youth worker Wasa, Ali Filmed & edited by Euan MacLaren Graham, Ara Taiohi for funding this project, the whole team at Zeal Wellington and especially Akatea Callaghan.