After more than a decade of industry speculation, lead Kinks composer Ray Davies has finally released a proper solo album, Other People's Lives. Presently on tour in support of his new endeavor, Davies appeared on stage at the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C., on Monday, March 20, 2006.
Davies was out on the road with a young band in tow, performing a mixed bag of Kinks classics, a handful of new selections from his latest release as well as the peculiar but entertaining obscure Kinks songs from their extensive recording catalogue.
Although written for brother Dave, Ray began the evening by singing "I'm Not Like Everybody Else", the B-side of a 1966 Kinks single. The nostalgic romp continued with Davies showcasing both sides of a November 1965 single, two classic Kinks rockers. Davies sounded stronger than ever.
Davies surprised the audience in beginning "Days" with an a capella vocal introduction. His sparse vocals and acoustic guitar set the mood for this moving Kinks ballad. The audience applause dwindled as the band kicked in its support for an intense version.
As Davies chatted about the early days of The Kinks over a blues-based band jam, this segued into an R&B swamped romp through their 1964 mega-single "You Really Got Me". More than four decades later, this classic rock staple was ignited by the electric guitar playing of one Raymond Douglas Davies. The crowd erupted in ecstatic applause, clamoring for more.
Sporting an acoustic guitar, Davies returned for one final encore, "Lola". The fierce rendition inspired the audience to join in on the spirited chorus and clap along. After pausing for crowd participation during a percussion break, a band jam ensued building up to a fantastic finish.
Responding to the roar of his fans, Davies graciously loitered as his bandmates departed to shake hands and sign autographs to those lucky enough to be standing in front of the stage. While soaking up the adulation, Davies toasted the house for their kind support before waving goodbye.
DC setlist: I'm Not Like Everybody Else * Where Have All The Good Times Gone * Till The End Of The Day * After The Fall * 20th Century Man * Oklahoma USA * Village Green * Animal Farm * Johnny Thunder * Sunny Afternoon * Deadend Street * Next Door Neighbor * Creatures Of Little Faith * Over My Head * The Tourist * Low Budget * intermission * Stand Up Comic * The Morning After * The Long Way Home * The Getaway * The Hard Way * Tired Of Waiting For You * Set Me Free * All Day And All Of The Night * Encore: Days * You Really Got Me * Encore: Lola
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Something familiar, Something special
Ray Davies showcases his new solo material on tour
by Timothy Tilghman