Sonny Day

aka Hone Wikaira

For a man who recorded so little over his 46-year career, singer Sonny Day sure did reach a lot of people.

In August 2008, 12 months after his death, over 1,000 people attended a memorial concert at Newmarket’s Broadway Pub. Such was the demand to perform, two stages were required; singers and musicians flew in from all over the country, from Australia and Tahiti.

Sonny Day in 1966
Dave Henry, Yuk Harrison, Joy Yates, Sonny Day, taken at the Shiralee, 1963
Photo credit: Yuk Harrison Collection
Scruff (left) and Yuk Harrison at Sonny Day's tangi, 2007. 
Photo credit: Bryan Staff
Sonny Day, 1985
Photo credit: Photo by William West
The Sundowners, Mt Maunganui, Christmas 1963. From left: Sonny Day, Max Purdie, Teddy Toi, Cheryl Allison, Lloyd Te Ngaio, Lionel Kennedy, and Bob Wynyard.
Photo credit: Bobi Petch Collection
Interview and Saving Up, live at Mainstreet, 1984
The Sundowners at The Jive Centre. L to R: Teddy Toi, Bob Wynyard, Trix Willoughby, Sonny Day, Lloyd Tangaio, Max Purdy
Billy TK and Sonny Day, 1975
Photo credit: Murray Cammick Collection
Sonny Day in the C'mon tour programme
Photo credit: Murray Cammick Collection
Summer 1984-1985 Good Times Band tour, led by Sonny Day
Photo credit: Mike Corless Collection
The Sundowners at the Jive Centre, Hobson St, Auckland, early 1960s (L-R): Lloyd Tangaio, Teddy Toi, Bob Wynyard, Sonny Day, Lionel Kennedy, Max Purdie.
Photo credit: Lorayne Tennet Collection
Saving Up
Betty Lou's Getting Out - All-Stars Play The Blues, live at Mainstreet, 1984 (with Wilko Johnson)
Sonny Day sings 'Funny How Time Slips Away' on 1987 TV show Dixie Chicken.
Sonny with Lorayne Tennet, 1964. Lorayne would later be an Auckland record retailer of some note.
Photo credit: Lorayne Tennet Collection
Sonny Day at The Jive Centre in Hobson Street, Auckland
Photo credit: Grant Gillanders Collection
Sonny Day, 1962
Photo credit: Gisborne Photo News
Sonny Day at the Performance Cafe, Auckland, 12 June, 1987
Photo credit: Photo by Graham Hooper. Grant Gillanders Collection
Midge Marsden and Sonny Day
Photo credit: Murray Cammick Collection
The Sundowners in Gisborne, 1962
Photo credit: Gisborne Photo News
A cover of Chuck Berry's 'Johnny B. Goode', 1964
Photo credit: Simon Grigg Collection
Sonny Day with Lorayne Tennet, 1964
Photo credit: Lorayne Tennet Collection
Sonny Day
Photo credit: Lorayne Tennet Collection

Marlon Brando was a fan and friend of Sonny Day’s – they both lived in Tahiti during the same period.

Supergroove were originally called The Lowdown Dirty Blues Band. They took their name from a Sonny Day poster – “Sonny Day Plays Lowdown Dirty Blues”.




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