Delsinki & Mick Thomas Release Tribute to the Late Dion Hirini

Melbourne singer-songwriters Delsinki and Mick Thomas have come together to write and record the song “‘Sunkilda Sinset (A Song for Dion)” in tribute to their “dear friend and musical partner” Dion Hirini, who passed away in March 2021, just hours after a playing a show with the pair and the extended cast of Keep The Circle Unbroken at Bundy Hall, Gippsland.

Developed in 2020 in the thick of COVID, Keep The Circle Unbroken explored the folk roots of country music via a tribute to the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band‘s Will The Circle Be Unbroken, their iconic 1972 collaboration with many of country music’s founding fathers. Delsinki and his bandmates in Row Jerry Crow conceived and put the show on the road in regional Victoria during lockdown and, like the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band original, performed with an ever-evolving list of special guests. Mick Thomas was one of the first guests involved and continued to come back to perform with the show. MickDelsinki and his bandmates in Row Jerry Crow shared the stage at Dion’s final show at Bundy Hall with the likes of Tim Rogers, Meg Doherty and Harry Hooky.

Having written “Sunkilda Sinset (A Song for Dion)” not long after their friends passing, Delsinki and Mick finally figured what to do with it, and in November 2023 they returned to Bundy Hall with many of the same musicians and many of the same audience members to record and video a performance of the song . It is that recording which is released as a new single and video.


Known as ‘Blx’ by his friends for his unique New Zealand-accented interpretation of the term “blokes” – his preferred way of addressing all and sundry – Dion Hirini was a beloved member of a wider Melbourne musical family, and perhaps best known for his 10-year stint playing guitar with Vika & Linda (and his additional work with Vika in the musical At Last -The Etta James Story.) Vika & Linda considered the fellow Pacific Islander Dion a brother (or, the “third Bull Sister”). New Zealand-born and raised in outback Australia, Dion made Melbourne his home, and notably also worked with Paul Kelly, Tina Arena and Debra Byrne.

The release of “Sunkilda Sinset (A Song for Dion)” comes amidst ongoing solo activity for both Delsinki – who has announced the new name of his band to be the Quiet Coachmen – and Mick Thomas, who is in the midst of a 13 Days of Christmas tour with his band the Roving Commission on the back of this year’s ARIA Top 40 album Where Only Memory Can Find You.

Delsinki & Mick Thomas with cast members from Keep the Circle Unbroken – ‘Sunkilda Sinset (A Song for Dion)’ is out now and available from Bandcamp