Meet Mia Kami, a 23-year-old singer/songwriter and activist from the island of Tonga, as well as a 2020 Nia Tero Storytelling Fellow. Mia is passionate about the importance of Indigenous knowledge, decolonizing the mind, and climate activism, and uses her music as a platform to advocate for issues she feels are relevant to her Pacific siblings. With her music, she hopes to bring light to the issues affecting the Pacific in a way only music can.
This past month, Mia released the music video for her single, Rooted, which you may recognize from the Nia Tero Seedcast podcast. Mia shares more about the song and video in her own words:
"I initially wrote Rooted for an anti-logging campaign in the Oro province of Papua New Guinea in 2018. When I was writing it, I wanted the song to reflect how there is a deep connection between people of the Pacific, our land, sea, and the deep ties to our identity. I had the same vision for the music video. I wanted the video to portray that we are not these small dots in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. We are strong, beautiful, and creative people with so many stories to tell. We are not our struggles and hardships; we are our ancestors, our culture, our art, our music, our dance. Current issues such as COVID-19, climate change, and Indigenous sovereignty remind us of the need to cling to these values of storytelling, creativity, culture, and togetherness that have sustained us as Pacific people."
"This song and this video is for all people with a yearning for home because we are rooted in our place, our cultures, our traditions, and our people. Because no matter where we are, we are here to stay." - Mia Kami