Ronnie Sundin

When a local version of Elvis was needed, Johnny Devlin stepped forward; when the fashion shifted to teen idols, someone a little less confronting was needed. In 1960, the chosen one was Ronnie Sundin, a 16-year-old from Auckland.

His older brother Nils was the first to take an interest in music by forming skiffle group, the Glow Worms, as he told Phil Gifford in 2020:

Ronnie Sundin
Ronnie Sundin's only longplayer, issued in 1960 by Viking Records. Left to right, Hugo Spemann, Sundin, Rudy Spemann, Bill Sevesi, Don Stacey, Alex Patchett. Bass player Malu Natapu was obscured behind Sundin when his image was enlarged.
Photo credit: Simon Grigg Collection
Ronnie Sundin signing autographs in Christchurch in 1960. Second from left is Dianne Jacobs, better known to most as Dinah Lee.
Ronnie Sundin with Wellington broadcaster Michael Woolf – Joy magazine, February 1960.
The Ronnie Sundin fan club flyer
Ronnie Sundin, with his Hofner semi-acoustic guitar, in a photo session likely to have taken place in Wellington in 1960.
Photo credit: Dominion and Evening Post collection, Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, Ref: EP/1960/0475-F. 
Al Paget Sextet at Bayswater, 1963: Jeff Bolton, Ronnie Sundin, Rod Gibson, Val Fisher, unknown, Al Patchett, Trevor Salisbury
Photo credit: Geoff Bolton Collection
Ronnie Sundin with Bill Sevesi and his band, circa 1960
Al Paget Sextet at the Shiralee, 1964: Geoff Bolton, Ken Flaherty, Rod Gibson, Ronnie Sundin, Al Patchett
Photo credit: Geoff Bolton Collection
Ronnie Sundin in the early 1960s. 
The "Teen Beat" column in Joy magazine hails the Howard Morrison Quartet, Ronnie Sundin, The Keil Isles and Red Hewitt as the successors to Johnny Devlin, late 1959



While on tour in Christchurch, aged 15, Sundin signed an autograph for a young fan: the promoter's daughter, Diane Jacobs. She would soon be well known as singer Dinah Lee.

‘Sea of Love’ was revived in 1989 for a hit film of that name, starring Al Pacino and Ellen Barkin. The soundtrack featured Tom Waits singing the song.

Al Paget first played with Sundin when he was 21, and a member of Bill Sevesi’s group the Jesters; he was then called Alex Patchett.

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