Tuesday, November 24, 2009

RAY DAVIES (SANS CHOIR) AT THE WELLMONT 11/24/09

Unlike some of his recent shows, Ray Davies did not have a choir with him at tonight's show. Here's what he did have: "Where Have All The Good Times Gone." "Dedicated Follower Of Fashion." "Sunny Afternoon." "Waterloo Sunset." "20th Century Man." "I Need You." "Celluloid Heroes." "Come Dancing." "Apeman." Some great songs from his solo albums Other People's Lives and Working Man's Cafe: "After The Fall," "The Tourist," "Vietnam Cowboys" and "Hymn For A New Age." Yes, "You Really Got Me" and "Lola." And maybe my favorite Kinks song, "I'm Not Like Everybody Else." I'm sure I'm forgetting some songs.

It was a great show. I liked the first half more - it was just Ray accompanied by another guitar player. But the second half, with the band, was really rocking. I am sometimes ribbed by my friends for being such a huge fan of AARP-eligable artists. I don't care, these songs hold up, Ray still performs them really well. And like Bob Dylan, he still has something to say, and fans who are cool enough to let him say it. Unlike Bob, he is definitely interested in whether or not the fans are having fun; lots of the songs were singalongs, and Ray seemed to love that. It was a really "warm" night. Some of the songs, like "Waterloo Sunset" and "Celluloid Heroes," still take my breath away. Ray talked a bit about The Kinks during the show, and about his brother Dave Davies. No mentions of a reunion, but all the mentions were affectionate.

I have to admit, I haven't even heard his latest release: The Kinks Choral Collection. Kinks songs with a choir, it just sounds goofy, although people who have seen the tour with the choir have raved about it. But I thought Working Man's Cafe was a good album, and Other People's Lives was great. Somehow, the fact that he has really strong songs from those albums make his older songs even more powerful: they are part of an ongoing continuum, as opposed to museum pieces. Anyway, Ray told us he had a "confession": that he would be coming back. I'm looking forward to it!

2 comments:

john b Scranton said...

I was at the Wellmont show on Tuesday. Ray was up to his usually high standards. His voice sounded great and the band was tight. As a life long Kins fan 30+ shows, I was a little disappointed that he ignored the "paper plate" requests. This has always been a KINKS TRADITION! Also he should have played "Thanksgiving Day" Tis the season and I always believed it was one of his better songs created in the 21st century. Ray is a true artist. He cares about his craft, but what really makes his shows special, is that he cares equally as much about his fans in the seats. His recent works remains top notch which makes him relevant in today's world. He is so much more than a "retro act" God Save the Kinks! John B. Scranton, Pa

Minority said...

thanks for posting John. I only saw The Kinks once, and I saw Ray once on the "Storyteller" tour. This was my favorite show of the three. I also wish he played "Thanksgiving Day," it is definitely one of his best songs ("Father Christmas" would have been cool too). As I mentioned, I really like his last two new albums, but I also would love to see a Kinks reunion tour. Thanks for reading and posting, John.