If get this right, there will be many cover versions by future bands. I shall try and link live versions if they exist from the tellybox or a film, the sound quality may not be the best, but there is nothing like watching a real talent live.
So, in a sort of chronological order, my seventeenth legends are The Kinks.
The Kinks were active for over three decades between 1964 and 1997, releasing 24 studio and 4 live albums. The first 2 albums are differently released in UK and US partly due to the difference in popularity of the extended play format (the UK market liked it, the US market did not, so US albums had the EP releases bundled onto them), and partly due to the US albums including the hit singles, and the UK albums not; after The Kink Kontroversy in 1965 the albums were the same. There have been somewhere between 100 and 200 compilation albums released worldwide.
Their hit singles included three UK number-one singles, starting in 1964 with “You Really Got Me“; plus 18 Top 40 singles in the 1960s alone and further Top 40 hits in the 1970s and 1980s. The Kinks had five Top 10 singles on the US Billboard chart. Nine of their albums charted in the Top 40. In the UK, the group had seventeen Top 20 singles along with five Top 10 albums.
The Kinks were an English rock band formed in Muswell Hill, north London, in 1963 by brothers Ray and Dave Davies. They are regarded as one of the most influential rock bands of the 1960s. The band emerged during the height of British rhythm and blues and Merseybeat and were briefly part of the British Invasion of the United States until their touring ban in 1965. Their third single, the Ray Davies-penned “You Really Got Me“, became an international hit, topping the charts in the United Kingdom and reaching the Top 10 in the United States. Their music was influenced by a wide range of genres, including American R&B and rock and roll initially, and later adopting British music hall, folk, and country. They gained a reputation for reflecting English culture and lifestyle, fuelled by Ray Davies’ wittily observational writing style.
Early works included albums such as Face to Face (1966), Something Else (1967), The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society (1968), Arthur (1969), Lola Versus Powerman (1970), and Muswell Hillbillies (1971), along with their accompanying singles. After a fallow period in the mid-1970s, the band experienced a revival during the late 1970s and early 1980s with their albums Sleepwalker (1977), Misfits (1978), Low Budget (1979), Give the People What They Want (1981) and State of Confusion (1983). In addition, groups such as Van Halen, the Jam, the Knack, the Pretenders, The Raincoats and the Fall covered their songs, helping to boost the Kinks’ record sales. In the 1990s, Britpop acts such as Blur and Oasis cited the band as a major influence.
Ray Davies (rhythm guitar, lead vocals, keyboards) and Dave Davies (lead guitar, vocals) remained members throughout the band’s 33-year run. Longest-serving member Mick Avory (drums and percussion) was replaced by Bob Henrit, formerly of Argent, in 1984. Original bass guitarist Pete Quaife was replaced by John Dalton in 1969. After Dalton’s 1976 departure, Andy Pyle briefly served as the band’s bassist before being replaced by Argent bassist Jim Rodford in 1978. Session keyboardist Nicky Hopkins accompanied the band in the studio for many of their recordings in the mid-to-late 1960s. The band became an official five-piece in 1970, when keyboardist John Gosling joined them. Gosling quit in 1978; he was first replaced by ex-Pretty Things member Gordon Edwards, then more permanently by Ian Gibbons in 1979. The band gave its last public performance in 1996 and broke up in 1997 as a result of creative tension between the Davies brothers.
In 2018, after years of ruling out a reunion due to the brothers’ animosity and the difficult relationship between long time drummer Mick Avory and Dave, Ray and Dave Davies finally announced they were working to reform the Kinks, with Avory also on board. However, comments made by each of the Davies brothers in 2020 and 2021 would indicate that in the years since the initial announcement, little (if any) progress has been made towards an actual Kinks reunion for a new studio band album.
A full list of their songs is here: Discography – The Kinks
The featured song Lola was in its day somewhat controversial, usually this sort of thing would have been banned by Radio 1 and ToTP, I suspect they did not realise! It was interesting that Ray had to fly back from the USA to re-record the word “Coca-Cola” into “Cherry-Cola” as the BBC did not want a brand name. He then flew straight back to the USA.
You really got me (1965) in glorious black and white.
All Day and All of the Night (from One for The Road show in 1980). Very animated Ray here.
Tired of Waiting For You – Official promo vid from 1965. Great ballad.
A Well Respected Man – Live concert performance from 2009.
Dedicated Follower of Fashion – 1973 performance. If you can listen to this without singing “Dedicated follower of fashion” and “Oh yes he is” then you are on too many meds.
Sunny Afternoon live (Colourised) Jazz Bilzen Festival 1970
Dear End Street – not a favourite of mine but very interesting promo.
Mr. Pleasant (1967) From the Beat show. Glorious black and white again.
Waterloo Sunset (Live concert 1973). High quality vid, superb song.
Death Of A Clown (live 2002) – Dave Davies this time with a haunting and brilliant tune.
Autumn Almanac – ToTP. 1967
Days – Ray in Glastonbury in 2010
Picture Book – 1969 – You may not know this one. Only released in Australia for some reason.
The Village Green Preservation Society – A quintessential British song. Love it.
Victoria (from One for The Road concert 1980)
The most played song in 1986 was this:
Come Dancing (Live on Top of The Pops, 1983)
I think apart from Lola, my favourite is this:
Their back catalogue is very extensive. So, if I have not included one of your favourites, please feel free to comment and link. Not that anyone reads them.
Singalong, enjoy and be happy!
Links to previous Legend articles:
© Phil the ex test manager 2021