Purveyors of modern torch song, stripped back soul, jazz beats and vibrant psychedelia, Auckland quartet Esther Stephens & The Means are one of the most exciting young ensembles operating in New Zealand and Australia.

Singer & actress Esther Stephens is a mainstay of the Auckland music scene, having lent her pipes to acts including Homebrew, Sola Rosa and Tama Waipara. Her first underground release ‘Asahi’ was praised by music journalist Martyn Pepperell as a ‘sultry, richly toned trip-hop/modern soul voice through an engaging melodic and rhythmic frame’ (Martyn Pepperell, Vanguard Red Magazine) and in 2012 Esther was given special mention after the release of the chart topping Home Brew album on which she features. ‘Stephens is a true standout, and adds her smoky-toned R&B talents to four different tracks including the classily smouldering Plastic Magic.’ (Lydia Jenkin, NZ Herald).

Abraham Kunin (guitar), Tom Broome (drums) and Marika Hodgson (Bass) aka The Means got their start several years ago as session musicians, bonding at the time over D'Angelo records and a shared love of playing. Having spent the last couple of years gigging on both sides of the Tasman, and sharing stages with the likes of Olivier Daysoul (US), Apollo Brown (US) and Oddisee (US), things really crystalised for The Means late 2013 with the release of their Aaron Nevezie (The Bunker Studio, NYC) produced debut EP The Ends. Featuring outside contributions from vocalists Rachel Fraser, Jesse Cassin, and Courtney Meredith, keyboardist Steph Brown (Lips) and beatmaker Christoph El Truento, their EP lead to media coverage and support from New Zealand Musician, 13th Floor, Wildstyle Mag, Vanguard Red and Radio New Zealand. 

Continuing the longterm creative partnership which most notably produced three tracks from 'The Ends EP', and singles 'Free', and NZ on Air funded 'Under You' Esther Stephens & The Means have made their tryst public. On the back of successful Red Bull Sound Select NZ tours, they have joined both forces and monikers, and are currently producing an EP under this unified banner, due for release Summer 2015. 

"Mesmerising and almost hypnotising…the complementation of these two magical musical forces is one that you have to experience" Rachael Watson, Groove & Marvel


Under You



Our Auckland Arts Festival show Respect is getting close! I had a chat to about my uncontainable excitement. Grab your tickets now! 🤗
It's easily one of the standouts of the Auckland Arts Festival. Aaradhna, Bella Kalolo, Annie Crummer and Esther Stephens singing the songs of Aretha Franklin accompanied by the swinging - New Zealand Herald
Loving this beautiful tune from the clever friends of Eyes No Eyes x
Excited to announce the maiden voyage of a brand new musical project - PRINT, a writing collaboration between myself and guitarist, composer and all round musical wizard Paul McLaney. Get along to PRINT at The iHeartRadio Sound Lounge in Aotea Square this Saturday from 5-6pm, entry is free. Till then, here's a little taster of our vocal rehearsal featuring the insanely talented Aria Jones & Liv Tennet.
Running harms ♥ #PRINT @ AAF iHeartRadio Sound Lounge in Aotea Square, Saturday 11 March 5 - 6pm, free dollars.
Happy happy happy International Women's Day! Why not celebrate by grabbing our cast recording of That Bloody Woman and turning it up LOUD :)
Excellent day yesterday at Music in Parks! Thanks so much to everyone who made it out. Here's a little snippet of our favourite song of the day 😁 #FootrotFlats4Eva
It's a lovely afternoon for some music! Sal Valentine & The Babyshakes, Blackbird Ensemble, Hopetoun Brown, Kong Fooey and in one special final appearance, Esther Stephens & The Means. See you there!

A free, family-friendly event bringing entertainment, art, fun and music to this much loved inner-city park.

This brand new annual event is all about community coming together to celebrate what makes Myers Park unique and the culture that surrounds it so much fun.


With MC Anita Wigl’it
12noon @[144700172210838:274:The Blackbird Ensemble (NZ)]: Carnivale
12:55pm @[417166128398587:274:Hopetoun Brown]
1:50pm @[162982030492153:274:Kong Fooey]
2:45pm @[168612453193215:274:Esther Stephens] & The Means
4.00pm @[120770394640928:274:Sal Valentine & The Babyshakes]

12:40pm Poetry from @[109438153900:274:Tourettes aka Dominic Hoey]
1:35pm Spike Bones – puppetry from Johnathon Acorn
2:30pm @[263554544007298:274:The Auckland Street Choir Project]
3:45pm Tinsel Monsters

@[1654559431507277:844:Twice as Nice Markets at Myers Park Medley], NZSL storytelling, Audio Described tour, face painting, food trucks, splice bbq, games, bubbles, @[461854497299098:274:Fairy Clare Battersby], Bird Booth & more.

For more info and bookings of the Audio Described tour, contact Nicola at:

For any general event enquiries, or more information about accessibility, please email: