Able Tasmans

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Able Tasmans
Origin New Zealand
Genres Indie rock
Years active 1984–1996
Labels Flying Nun
Past members Leslie Jonkers
Peter Keen
Graeme Humphreys
Craig Mason
Jane Dodd
Ronald Young
David Beniston
Stuart Greenway

The Able Tasmans were an indie band from Auckland, New Zealand.

At various times the band consisted of Leslie Jonkers, Peter Keen, Graeme Humphreys, Craig Mason, David Beniston, Jane Dodd (previously of The Verlaines), and Ronald Young. They formed in 1984 and named themselves after the Dutch explorer Abel Tasman. They released four albums and two EPs on Flying Nun Records. The band split up in 1996.[1]

Ten years later Graeme Humphreys and Peter Keen regrouped to record an album, The Overflow, under the name of Humphreys & Keen.[2][3]

The band's style of music could be considered as similar to the prevalent Dunedin Sound favoured by Flying Nun during the 1980s and 1990s and most effective[citation needed] when keyboards (not normally prominent in the Dunedin Sound) were to the fore, as on their early student radio hit "Snow White Chook."

Graeme Humphreys is now better known in New Zealand for his role as a radio talkback host (under the name Graeme Hill).


Date of Release Title Label Charted Certification Catalog Number
1987 A Cuppa Tea and a Lie Down[4] Flying Nun Records/Flying Nun Europe - - FN075, FNE18
1990 Hey Spinner Flying Nun Records - - FN162
1992 Somebody Ate My Planet Flying Nun Records; Festival Records - - FNCD233; D30807
1995 Store in a Cool Place Flying Nun Records; Festival Records - - album: FN312; L31461

CD: FNCD312; D 31461

1998 Songs From the Departure Lounge[5] Flying Nun Records - - FNCD404
1985 The Tired Sun Flying Nun Records 42 - FN043
1993 Shape Of Dolls Flying Nun Records; Festival Records 39 - FNCD280; D17044
1986 A: Able Tasmans, "Buffalos"

B: Raucous Laughter, "Relapse"

Flying Nun Records; Festival Records - - FN067

Featured appearances[edit]

The group have appeared on a few CD and DVD compilations since 1991 in New Zealand. The following is a list of these albums that have featured tracks by the Able Tasmans.


  1. ^ Flying Nun band history Archived 15 July 2006 at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ New Zealand Listener: "Baroque Dreams" by Nick Bollinger, 25–31 March 2006.
  3. ^ Radio New Zealand: National Radio, Sept 15, 2006. Archived 20 October 2008 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ CD includes Buffaloes and most of Tired Sun
  5. ^ Posthumous "best-of" compilation
  6. ^ "Various - Roger Sings the Hits". Discogs.