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The Best New Zealand Gigs: December 15th-29th

Stuck for gig ideas across New Zealand this summer? Rolling Stone AU/NZ has got you covered

grentperez best New Zealand gigs


In Partnership with McDonald’s

Stuck for gig ideas across New Zealand this summer? Don’t worry, Rolling Stone AU/NZ has got you covered. 

As soon as the sun breaks through the Land of the Long White Cloud, Kiwis really have only one thing on their mind: going to concerts and festivals.

Seeing live music with your mates often involves a classic summer road trip, whether you’re driving into Auckland CBD for a headline show at Spark Arena or trekking to the South Island for Rhythm & Alps, and summer roadie season also means Driver Tax.

Us drivers know what that means: whatever your mates are munching on while you’re behind the wheel, you crave – nay, deserve – a cut.

Luckily Macca’s has you covered with a Driver Tax Calculator so you don’t have to calculate what you’re owed yourself. Simply download the Macca’s app to work out what your passengers owe you, and you can even help them pay it with cool food deals all summer long. When you get to pick the tunes AND get the Driver Tax, it feels good to be the driver.

Before you hit the road, check out Rolling Stone AU/NZ‘s list of the best gigs taking place around New Zealand between December 15th-29th below.


Thursday, December 14th-Friday, December 15th
Port Chalmers Town Hall, Port Chalmers

Tickets: Humanitix

A true Kiwi great has two consecutive nights lined up at Port Chalmers in Otago. Following last year’s hugely successful ‘I Believe You Are a Star’ tour, Dimmer return for some encore shows in 2023. Shayne Carter put together a tight six-piece ensemble for last year’s tour, and their time together in 2022 just wasn’t enough for the musician. “The music sounded too good and the band played it too well to just pack this thing away,” he said. “I truly believe that this line up was the fullest realisation of the musical vision I always had for Dimmer.”

Mel Parsons

Friday, December 15th
The Loons, Lyttelton

Tickets: Eventfinda

The acclaimed singer-songwriter is following her stellar support slot for The Teskey Brothers with a special headline show in Lyttelton. Parsons will be accompanied by her wonderful backing band, who’ll help her showcase songs from her forthcoming album, the eagerly anticipated follow-up to 2022’s Slow Burn.


Friday, December 15th
Powerstation, Auckland

Saturday, December 16th
San Fran, Wellington

Tickets: Live Nation

Rarely does an artist enjoy such a swift rise to the top as Western Sydney’s grentperez. The burgeoning indie pop star has toured everywhere over the past two years, including a sold-out run in North America. He’s released songs with Lime Cordiale and supported Rex Orange County. And the kicker? The Filipino-Australian singer-songwriter just turned 22 years old.


Saturday, December 16th
Powerstation, Auckland

Tickets: Ticketmaster

New Zealand is home to one of power pop’s foremost bands, The Beths, but perhaps the genre’s best contemporary purveyor is coming to Auckland in December. Canadian indie outfit Alvvays have released three studio albums, all more acclaimed than the last, including last year’s beautiful Blue Rev. Aside from Juno and Grammy nominations, the fact that most major publications, including Pitchfork and Rolling Stone, placed the album high on their year-end lists speaks to Alvvays’ supreme quality.

Nessa Barrett & Oliver Cronin

Tuesday, December 19th
Powerstation, Auckland

Tickets: Frontier Touring

Nessa Barrett will travel from the US to New Zealand this month to show why she’s a pop superstar in the making. The singer-songwriter is coming to a country with a noted affinity for her music: Barrett’s 2022 debut album, Young Forever, barely scratched the top 100 in her home country, but was a top 40 success in New Zealand. She’ll be joined by Aussie producer and songwriter Oliver Cronin, who’s been racking up the streaming figures through big collaborations with BOY $COUT GATSBY, Mason Dane, and many more.

SAVE THE b! – A 95bFM Fundraising Gig

Wednesday, December 20th
Auckland Town Hall, Auckland

Tickets: Ticketmaster

Student radios are a backbone of New Zealand’s music industry, and one the country’s very best stations needs a bit of help. The Aotearoa music community is banding together to save Auckland’s 95bFM with a massive fundraising gig across two stages in the beautiful Auckland Town Hall. And if the event being for a good cause isn’t reason enough to attend, the lineup will surely entice you: Princess Chelsea, Marlon Williams, Ebony Lamb, and Tiny Ruins are just some of the fine local artists taking part.

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Tami Neilson

Wednesday, December 27th
Goldie Estate, Waiheke Island

Tickets: Under the Radar

Going to see one of New Zealand’s very best country music artists is the ideal way to blow away the post-Christmas blues. Nominated for Best Single at this year’s Rolling Stone Aotearoa Awards for “Beyond the Stars”, her iconic collaboration with the one and only Willie Nelson, Neilson will play her lovely songs at a vineyard full of music fans on December 27th. There’s a reason the Queen of Kiwi Country is so beloved.

Ross From Friends

Thursday, December 28th
Neck of the Woods, Auckland

Tickets: Live Nation

No, it’s not the annoying guy from the famous sitcom Friends, it’s the excellent globetrotting British producer. Ross From Friends will head to one of Auckland’s prime club venue for a party before appearances at Rhythm & Vines and Rhythm & Alps. The producer will be supported by AW B and Peach Milk on the night.