The Drongos Profile

Chris Bourke
31 Mar 2014

In 1978 four New Zealand musicians, having heard so much about New York, decided to check it out.

They became well-known for busking the pavements of Manhattan, played clubs such as CBGBs and Max’s Kansas City many times, attracted notice from serious A&R names, and became friendly with David Lange during his visits to New York. They released two albums, one of them recorded on the sidewalk.

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The Drongos playing on the corner of 50th and Broadway, NYC
I Gotta Leave - home made demo
The Drongos at the Tin Pan Alley Ballroom, NYC, in the early 1980s - Richard Kennedy, Jean McAllister, Tony McMaster and Stan Mitchell
Photo credit: Photo by Peter Rosenberg
The Drongos at CBGBs
The Drongos in Manhattan in the early 80s: Richard Kennedy, Jean McAllister, Stan Mitchell and Tony McMaster
Photo credit: Photo by Peter Rosenberg
The Drongos at Cornell University, New York
The Drongos interviewed on a NYC street by Paul Shaffer
The Drongos with friends at the West 50s Manhattan playground, 1982-3
Photo credit: Photo by Peter Rosenberg
Live at Cornell University
The Drongos meet David Lange on their farewell tour in 1985, backstage at Exchequers nightclub, Wellington
Substance Abuser
Diamond In The Dirt - live in NYC
Playing in NYC with a "friend" dancing, Richard Kennedy on the right
Tony McMaster, Jean McAllister, Richard Kennedy, Stan Mitchell
Will play for food: The Drongos in Midtown West, NYC, 1983: Richard Kennedy, Tony McMaster, Jean McAllister, Stan Mitchell


Proteus Records


Jean McAllister - guitar, vocals

Richard Kennedy - guitar, vocals

Tony McMaster - bass

Stanley John Mitchell - drums


In the early 1980s The Drongos were named New Zealand Cultural Ambassadors to the US