A well-known musician has been sentenced to two years in prison for dealing drugs to his friends.

Donald Richard Bryant - better known as Rick Bryant - has pleaded guilty to possession of the class-A drug cocaine, possession of ecstasy, cannabis, selling cannabis and possession of cannabis for supply.

The 63 year-old was sentenced on all five charges in the High Court at Auckland this morning.

Bryant has been a blues and rock singer and songwriter since the 1970s in bands including Rick Bryant and the Jive Bombers and the Windy City Strugglers.

He once flew to Australia to perform at actor Sam Neill's 60th birthday party alongside top Kiwi performers like Bic Runga and Neil and Tim Finn.

He has also donated his time to benefit concerts for the Christchurch earthquake victims.

Police raided his home in February and found cake tins containing 400g of cannabis.

They also found a small amount of cocaine, four ecstasy tablets in a teacup and $4060 in cash.

Justice Graham Lang told the court that he had considered home detention but found Bryant to be involved in a "reasonably busy" drug dealing operation.

Bryant has a history of drug convictions that go back to the 1970s.

Justice Lang described him as a "long-time user" of canabis.

"It will take significant steps on your part if you are to disassociate yourself from the drug."

The Crown had asked for a starting point of three years in prison.

Crown prosecutor Evan McCaughan said Bryant had "squirreled away" a large amount of money.

Mr McCaughan said Bryant had made no moves to get help for his cannabis use while awaiting sentence.

Bryant's lawyer Paul Wicks said his client was ready to address his cannabis use and would agree to counselling.

He said Bryant's cannabis operation ran for about two years and he did not supply to strangers or children.

Mr Wicks said Bryant sold the cannabis to "make ends meet and support his own drug use".

Bryant also used the drug to deal with chronic pain but he has since made the decision to stop using it.

In his sentencing, Justice Lang said Bryant had been jailed in 1975 for one year and six months for possessing cannabis for supply.

He said that made the current offending worse.

"You knew you ran the risk of imprisonment if you were caught."

He gave Bryant a discount for his early plea but declined to give him a sentence of home detention.

"I conclude your drug dealing cannot be seen as being at the lower end.

Yesterday, Bryant told the Herald he could not discuss the case before sentencing.

However, he was worried the court case and publicity would have a "catastrophic" effect on people he had worked with who were "good people - they are straight".

He is in the Jubilation Gospel Choir that features a number of well-known actors including Jennifer Ward Lealand and Shortland St actress Amanda Billing.

The Auckland-based choir formed in 2000 and features on the soundtrack of the movie No 2.