The Hi-Marks comprised three brothers – Hayward, George, Ellington ‘Butch’ Ruka, and their nephew John Ruka. The leader and most experienced of the group was Butch Ruka. Making his name as a solo performer, he toured with Allison Durbin, Johnny Devlin, Nash Chase and many other top artists of that era. His love for entertaining inspired him to unite with his brothers and nephew to form a quartet. After many hours of practicing harmony; concentrating mainly on reviving songs by The Platters, Mills Brothers and their own traditional Maori music, the new Hi-Marks emerged.
In 1978 the group entered talent quests – always finishing with a placing. Still not satisfied with their music career and eager to move in new directions, they approached Cammy Hill, of Dudley-Hill Promotions after reading a write-up on her career as an entertainment agent in a city newspaper. Under her guidance, a floorshow was put together, choreographer organised, charts written and a sound system purchased. A show at last! Christmas saw them appearing in several cabarets around Auckland. Appearances on television followed with spots on the Club Show and Telethon. Regretfully no footage remains of any of these live performances.
Cammy Hill introduced the group to Gary Daverne and Glyn Tucker of Mandrill Studios in 1979 and over the following 18 months they produced two albums, earning them Gold and Platinum awards.
This collection represents the best tracks from those recording sessions, digitally re-mastered from the original master-tapes by Glyn Tucker, who had recorded the original sessions back in 1979/80.