The Kinks - Album by Album (song by song)

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by mark winstanley, Apr 4, 2021.

  1. DISKOJOE

    DISKOJOE Boredom That You Can Afford!

    Location:
    Salem, MA
    Easy, if you watch 2-3 episodes a day, 5 days a week!

    To get back to at least the subject of this thread, I was looking for the issue of the Disc and Music Echo that had Ray's take on Revolver on the World Radio History website (which I highly recommend). They didn't have it but they had this issue from a year later which had an interesting article on the last page:

    https://worldradiohistory.com/UK/Disc/1967/DISC-&-Music-Echo-1967-08-12.pdf
     
  2. kw21925

    kw21925 Lieutenant-Corporal; Gazpacho Police

    Holy crap. I did a double take and I swear my heart skipped a beat when I saw the Miami Show Band listed on that advert. What happened to them, why, you wouldn't do it to a dog.
     
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  3. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Which would be even worse if you don't have lawn and they are on their own!
     
  4. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Those endless days........
     
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  5. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    As for Got Live If You Want It the UK E.P. from 1965 is far, far superior to the 1966 US LP.

    Q. Did the Monkees release a live 60's LP in the 60's or much later on?
     
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  6. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Far better than being outvoted and having to play Batman live with my band in 1988!
     
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  7. DISKOJOE

    DISKOJOE Boredom That You Can Afford!

    Location:
    Salem, MA
    Rhino Records did release a Live '67 album in the late 80s, which I have, as well as a box set via Rhino Handmade in the early 2000s, I believe.
     
  8. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    It's genuinely Kinky but i can't link Ray to this!
     
  9. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    If that was down to having no cash you could have hit the blind man on the head and have enough loot if you put in the boot etc!
     
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  10. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Perhaps George could have been forced to pay out royalties but 5% may appear too small!
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2021
  11. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    A cool shop I dropped in on when on holiday going out west young man!
    Q. Wasn't Blind Lemon Jefferson on the stores plastic bags Mark?
     
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  12. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
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  13. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Heaven forbid, no one mention the Pushbike Song!
     
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  14. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Batman was (still) an extremely popular show in the 1970's when I was a boy!
     
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  15. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Beat me to it!
     
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  16. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Is that why they brought in Batgirl?
     
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  17. Scottsol

    Scottsol Forum Resident

    Location:
    Evanston, IL
    Them’s fightin’ words!
     
  18. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Yes
     
  19. Steve62

    Steve62 Vinyl hunter

    Location:
    Murrumbateman
    My kind of record store - I’m very partial to pre-WW2 blues.
    Batman TV show - weekdays after school, along with Get Smart, Gilligan’s Island, F-Troop, Hogan’s Heroes. So glad we didn’t have tablets and laptops in those days.

    Someone was looking for this. kindakinks.net has Ray’s full review of Revolver:
    Ray Davies reviews the Beatles LP
     
  20. zipp

    zipp Forum Resident

    It's interetsing when Ray says about Love You Too (sic) "This sort of song I was doing two years ago--now I'm doing what the Beatles were doing two years ago."

    And it's not because Ray says Taxman reminds him of Batman that George necessarily was inspired by Batman for his song. This latter opinion is becoming an internet factoid which is not born out by the facts.
     
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  21. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Wonderboy.

    [​IMG]
    Single by the Kinks
    B-side
    "Polly"
    Released 5 April 1968 (UK) 15 May 1968 (US)
    Recorded January 1968
    Studio Pye (No. 2), London
    Genre Pop
    Label Pye 7N 17468 (UK) Reprise 0691 (US)
    Songwriter(s) Ray Davies
    Producer(s) Ray Davies

    This is a really interesting song ... It was the first Kinks track that failed to get into the UK top twenty since the early cover songs, but it got to Number 4 in the Netherlands.
    Apparently John Lennon was very taken by the song, and legend has it that he was at a club and kept asking the DJ to play it over and over again.
    Dave apparently liked the song, saying that the band really felt something for it even though it wasn't a hit.
    Pete Quaife thought it "was horrible".

    So it sets us up for an interesting discussion of this one.
    It was inspired by Ray expecting his second child. He was examining his place in the world, the problems and all these kinds of things and it was called Wonderboy, because he wasn't aware that he was having a daughter when he wrote it.... so @Wondergirl has it completely right.

    [​IMG][​IMG]
    [​IMG][​IMG]

    mono mix (2:48), recorded Mar 1968 at Pye Studios (No. 2), London

    La-la-la-la...
    Wonder boy, life's just begun.
    Turn your sorrow into wonder
    Dream alone, don't sigh, don't groan
    Life is only what you wonder.
    Day is as light as your brightest dreams,
    Night is as dark as you feel it ought to be.
    Time is as fast as the slowest thing,
    Life is only...

    Wonder boy,
    Wonder boy.
    Everybody is looking for the sun.
    People strain their eyes to see,
    But I see you and you see me,
    And ain't that wonder?

    Wonder boy, some mother's son,
    Life is full of work and plunder[blunder?].
    Easy go, life is not real,
    Life is only what you conjure.

    Wonder boy,
    And the world is joy, every single day.
    It's the real McCoy,
    Wonder boy.
    Everybody is looking for the sun.
    People strain their eyes to see,
    But I see you and you see me,
    And ain't that wonder?

    Wonder boy, some mother's son,
    Turn your sorrow into wonder
    Dream alone, go have your fun.
    Life is only...
    Life is only...
    Life is only...

    Written by: Ray Davies
    Published by: Davray Music/Carlin Music Corp.

    We open up with a sort of old timey feel, with the piano, and is that a mandolin in the background? and a chorus of la la la's. The softness of the vocal reveals Rasa on the backing vocals again.... this makes me wonder also, if Rasa was pregnant while singing these backing vocals ... or if she had just had Victoria... I can't find any details on Victoria ...

    When I look through these lyrics I see the pondering of possibilities. There is also a certain positivity. There is all this stuff going on around you, but dream, turn your sorrow into wonder, don't get bogged down in the fine lines, live your life, because it will be what you make it.
    The line "Everybody's looking for the sun/son" is really very interesting, and could be interpreted many ways.
    I think the line that holds this song together is "but I see you, and you see me, and ain't that wonder?" .... No matter what is going on in the world, and what anybody believes, isn't it a wonder, a marvel that we even exist, and we have each other.
    There is an unapologetic sentimentality here that works for me. Sure there are some slightly deeper references that we can dig through, and I'm sure some folks will, and I am sure we will find some more out over the weekend, but to me this is a song about expectation and sentimentality, and seems like it could well also fit into the Village Green theme.

    Towards the end of the verse we get the vocal rise up to join the la la la's in the backing, and it is very effective.
    I get the impression the title may well be Wonder Boy, as that seems to be the theme here, and I look forward to folks input on that.
    I draw that opinion from the lead into the first chorus where we end the verse with "Life Is Only ...... Wonder, Boy"... and when we look at it through childlike eyes, less jaded by the cynicism of age, life is a wonder.

    The chorus is a beautiful change up, and the change between those two chords ( G and Eb ?) creates a beautifully disarming feel, almost like the wonder of life has swept us off our feet.... and it makes for a nice melody also.
    I also really like the way the end of the chorus draws back to just the piano and vocal, and the angelic ahhh in the background leads us back into the mellow bounce of the main track.

    Even here we don't really get a standard arrangement with the main sections being repeated, but slightly different each time, adding a little flavour.
    Then we get the wonderful unresolved fade out with the repeated "Life Is Only".

    This isn't a song I have known for all that long really. I would have first heard it when I bought the three disc Village Green album, and perhaps that is why I see it more as part of the Village Green phase of the band. There is a beautiful reflective nostalgia that keeps on going with the next single......

     
  22. ajsmith

    ajsmith Senior Member

    Location:
    Glasgow
    ‘Wonderboy’ is a fantastic song, an almost Zen-like philosophical rumination on the meaning of the human condition. It’s deceptively childlike, not childish, in a kind of ‘strip life back to the basics and see what we got’ kind of way. And what a beautiful melody, appropriately catchily circular but with dramatic moments of great poignancy. As a song, it’s a perfect wise egg from the mind of Ray at his zenith of unselfconscious creativity.

    I’m not sure it’s a fantastic record though: kinda kluttered and dinky sounding in a way that allows the unattentive to more easily mistake it for the kiddies ditty it superficially resembles but is so much more than.

    And it’s definitely NOT a good candidate for a hit single: after the daring progression of ‘Autumn Almanac’ this subtle but also undersold item comes off as a retreat into teenybop Tin Pan Alley tweeness in the context of the Serious Pop Marketplace of 1968. Though I don’t agree with him as an assessment of the tracks worth on its own merits, Pete Quaife’s description of Wonderboy as ‘Herman’s Hermits w*nking’ is a pretty fair reflection of how this would have played first impressions wise in a market where the likes of ‘Jumping Jack Flash’ and ‘Lady Madonna’ were in the mix.
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2021
  23. croquetlawns

    croquetlawns Forum Resident

    Location:
    Scotland
    I don't know why, but I've never been that taken with Wonderboy as a single (but then, nor were the UK public!). I've always thought that Pretty Polly had more potential as a single.
     
  24. Fortuleo

    Fortuleo Used to be a Forum Resident

    I’ve always been crazy about this track. It's one of the handful of songs that keep popping in my head at any time with no warning (strangely, another one is the very obscure Genesis tune Evidence of Autumn – but I digress). Anyway, Wonderboy's splendid melody (melodies) is engrained in my brain in such a profound way… This lalala-lalala tune is enchanting, Ray’s high-pitched singing is a thing of… beauty, perfect in every way, his mastery of phrasing, tone and musicality at its very peak. Lennon was supposedly very fond of the song, and I can see why (shades of Nowhere Man, but also #9 Dream and of course Beautiful Boy), but if you’d said it was McCartney, I would’ve seen why as well (kinship to Martha My Dear's melodic grace). It also strikes me as a foreshadower to some Idle Race / Move Jeff Lynne tunes, this infectious circus fairground sound (more recently referenced in the latest Coral LP). Another brilliant song, with incredible counter-melodies, a majestic harpsichord sounding like bells and chimes, and an all’ round magical baroque production. Released around Christmas (with slightly different lyrics?), it could’ve been a stoned cold holiday classic.
     
  25. ajsmith

    ajsmith Senior Member

    Location:
    Glasgow
    After making some forays into early music video in 1966, The Kinks seemed to forget about the young medium for their 1967 singles, but they made a basic promo for ‘Wonderboy’ for British Pathe in 1968 with some nature stock intercut. Note this is a shortened edit of the song:
     
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