Sidewalk Sally was formed in early 1987 when Adrian Cartwright left longterm
Regines Niteclub’s resident band Ex-Rated to go to Australia.
Remaining members,Bill Acklin and Barry McConnachie introduced bass player Seth Dickinson
and Sidewalk Sally was born.
It wasn’t long before vocalist Donna Powell was added to the group.
Bill eventually decided to branch out as a solo artist and Sidewalk Sally settled into existence
as the core 3 piece that would form the basis of the band for the next 7 years.
Pretty soon the lure of a fixed term residency at Sammys niteclub meant the addition of John Garbutt
on keyboards and guitar. Following John’s departure at the end of the residency,
the format of 2 female vocalists was established with Lisa Cameron, Wendy Williams and Diana Leonard
each providing the foil to Donna’s dynamic performances. (click here for some old video clips, and photos)
The lineup of Donna, Di, Seth and Barry, through the years 1992 - 95, is perhaps the best known
of the Sidewalk Sally lineups.
Semi residencies at Regines and Sammys, performances throughout Otago, Miss Otago Shows
and many corporate and private functions meant a busy performance schedule.
By 1995, however, the changing licensing trade, with large venues giving way to smaller town based bars,
along with new parenting responsibilities, saw things slow down for Sidewalk Sally
After a brief existence as a 3 piece private function band with Donna and Barry
joined by Alan Crawford on bass, Sidewalk Sally retired off the streets in 1996.
Fast forward to 2007, and following numerous requests for a reunion, the Dunedin Heritage Festival
presented the opportunity to stage a Regines reunion with resident bands, Ex-Rated and Sidewalk Sally.
This hugely successful night lead to Sidewalk Sally playing at the NZ Masters Games
with the lineup of Donna, Seth, Barry, Bill Acklin and Marcel Rodeka on drums.
Donna and Barry kept the momentum going but at a level that could be sustained around busy family and worklives
…”once more before we die” the catchcry.
Initially an informal Donna and Barry Acoustic Duo, then Whateva, with Michaela Anderson as second vocalist,
and finally the current 2 piece Sidewalk Sally.