Fit­ting trib­ute for a loved mu­sic leg­end

South Waikato News - - Your Paper, Your Place - LUKE KIRKEBY

Aroha for New Zealand mu­sic leg­end Bunny Wal­ters was strong dur­ing his re­cent sold out trib­ute con­cert in Toko­roa.

The Toko­roa Cos­mopoli­tan Club was filled with 370 friends, fam­ily, and fans of the 1960s and 70s hit maker, who died in De­cem­ber from com­pli­ca­tions with his liver.

With a line up of well known muso’s and close friends from Wal­ters’ hey­day, in­clud­ing Tom Sharplin, Den­nis Marsh, Ray Solomon, and Larry Mor­ris, con­cert go­ers travelled from far and wide to at­tend.

‘‘The show was very emo­tional for every­one and I must ad­mit a tear came to my eye. Ev­ery muso had their mo­ment,’’ mu­si­cian and friend Rob­bie Web­ber said.

‘‘Of the muso’s 99 per cent of them had worked with Bunny at some stage and on the stage there was prob­a­bly in ex­cess of 200 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence so it was quite spe­cial.’’

Wal­ters’ wi­dow Ani Tay­lor said his spirit could be felt in the room.

‘‘We started it as a fundraiser and sadly it turned into a trib­ute con­cert but Bunny would have been so proud and I could just see him sit­ting there,’’ she said.

‘‘They had a tele­vi­sion screen at the back and at one stage I looked up and I couldn’t be­lieve it but it looked like he was there in spirit say­ing I ap­prove, well done,’’ or­gan­iser Loma Roesten­burg added.

‘‘It was good be­cause it just showed how much they all loved him,’’ Tay­lor said.

Roesten­burg and Web­ber said based on the pos­i­tive feed­back they now hoped to hold an an­nual Bunny Wal­ters trib­ute con­cert fea­ture artists from the 60s and 70s.

‘‘Peo­ple were say­ing it was one of the best shows they had ever been to and they are ask­ing when we are go­ing to do it again,’’ Roesten­burg said.

‘‘A lot of them are from out of town and I know there are a lot of peo­ple who missed out be­cause when I got home the Satur­day night be­fore the show I had 83 mes­sages on my phone from peo­ple want­ing tick­ets.’’

‘‘We are in the process of see­ing if it will be fea­si­ble to run it again, maybe to­wards the end of the year, be­cause dur­ing the last one artists gave their time for noth­ing but for the next one it would have to be for the artists,’’ Web­ber said.

Tay­lor said she would like to thank every­one who at­tended and made the con­cert pos­si­ble.

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