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Also Known As: Raymond Douglas Davies, Raymond Davies, Raymond D. Davies Died:
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Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

w label, all recorded at their new studio, Konk, were critically well received but continued to place in the lower depths of the charts; the calypso-themed "Supersonic Rocket Ship" (1972) would be their last U.K. Top 20 hit for over a decade. Undaunted, Davies delved deeply into theatrical material for Preservation Act One (1973) and Preservation Act Two (1974), which further explored the themes from Village Green. As before, it performed only modestly well, but the bandâ¿¿s live shows, which had expanded to feature actors, a horn section and backing singers, made them a top concert draw. However, at the height of this period, Davies was undergoing a painful separation from his wife, Rasa, who left him with their children on his birthday in 1973. Davies collapsed after an expletive-laded tirade on stage in London, after which he was hospitalized in critical condition.Davies eventually recovered and began work on a musical production for Granada Television called "Starmaker" (ITV, 1974), about a rock star that traded places with an average citizen. The story also provided the backbone for the Kinksâ¿¿ next album, The Kinks Present a Soap Opera (1974), which led to a lengthy tour through 1975. Their...

w label, all recorded at their new studio, Konk, were critically well received but continued to place in the lower depths of the charts; the calypso-themed "Supersonic Rocket Ship" (1972) would be their last U.K. Top 20 hit for over a decade. Undaunted, Davies delved deeply into theatrical material for Preservation Act One (1973) and Preservation Act Two (1974), which further explored the themes from Village Green. As before, it performed only modestly well, but the bandâ¿¿s live shows, which had expanded to feature actors, a horn section and backing singers, made them a top concert draw. However, at the height of this period, Davies was undergoing a painful separation from his wife, Rasa, who left him with their children on his birthday in 1973. Davies collapsed after an expletive-laded tirade on stage in London, after which he was hospitalized in critical condition.

Davies eventually recovered and began work on a musical production for Granada Television called "Starmaker" (ITV, 1974), about a rock star that traded places with an average citizen. The story also provided the backbone for the Kinksâ¿¿ next album, The Kinks Present a Soap Opera (1974), which led to a lengthy tour through 1975. Their final theater rock effort, School Boys in Disgrace (1975), took the English educational system to task in its origin story for Mr. Flash, the anti-hero of Preservation. The following year, the Kinks left RCA for Arista, which marked their return to more straightforward rock material. The new approach generated a slew of hits for the band, from the nostalgic "Come Dancing" (1982), their highest-charting single in the U.S. since "Tired of Waiting for You," to the more cynical "Catch Me Now Iâ¿¿m Falling" and "Do It Again," the bandâ¿¿s last entry on the Billboard Hot 100. Following the release of Word of Mouth, their final album for Arista, Davies released a solo album, Return to Waterloo, a soundtrack album for a hour-long musical film he wrote and directed. His devotion to the project, as well as a stormy relationship with Pretenders singer Chrissie Hynde, pulled his attention away from the Kinks, sparking new tensions with his brother.

The Kinks signed with MCA Records in 1986, but the results were less than spectacular, with only Think Visual (1986) reaching the Billboard 200. They were soon dropped by the label, which marked the beginning of the Kinksâ¿¿ decline in the 1990s. Their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990 did nothing to revive interest in their careers, and tenure with Columbia Records resulted in several largely overlooked records before the label also dropped them from their roster. The band launched their own imprint, Konk, in 1994, but album sales continued to plummet. Following the publication of Daviesâ¿¿ autobiography, X-Ray in 1995, the Kinks performed their last public performance at the site of the Clissold Arms pub, located directly across from their childhood home in Fortis Green, and where the band gave their first concert in the early 1960s.

In the wake of the Kinks⿿ split, Davies launched a series of well-regarded solo projects. Following the release of X-Ray, he promoted the book through a series of concerts he called "Storyteller," in which he played Kinks songs while reading from his book and telling anecdotes about his career in music. He later filmed one of these shows for VH1, which in turn launched a series of intimate concerts with other musicians under this same title (VH1, 1996- ), as well as a new book and album, also titled Storyteller, in 1998. Davies was appointed a Commander of the British Empire in 2004, shortly before Other People⿿s Lives, a full-length album of new songs, appeared in 2006, which reached the Top 40 in the U.K. but only No. 122 on the American charts. Its follow-up, Working Man⿿s Café (2008), featured a 20-minute short film directed by Davies that featured footage from a 2001 Storyteller tour. In 2009, he released The Kinks Choral Collection, which featured new versions of classic songs from his band⿿s catalog recorded with the Crouch End Festival Chorus. It reached No. 28 on the U.K. charts, and spawned a 2009 reissue which featured the Christmas single "Postcard from London," a duet with former girlfriend Chrissie Hynde.

A performance with Metallica on "All Day and All of the Night" at the 25th Anniversary Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Concert prompted Davies to release See My Friends (2010), which again featured new versions of classic Kinks songs, this time recorded with fellow superstars like Bruce Springsteen, Billy Corgan, Jon Bon Jovi and Jackson Browne. After a brief 2011 health scare involving blood clots in his lungs, Davies was appointed curator of the 2011 Meltdown Festival in London, at which he performed The Village Green Preservation Society with the London Philharmonic. Throughout the â¿¿90s and new millennium, Davies repeatedly fielded requests for a Kinks reunion, which were invariably quashed by his brother Dave. The death of Pete Quaife in 2010 and Dave Daviesâ¿¿ recovery from a 2004 stroke also made a full-fledged reunion impossible, but overtures from each brother were still being made as late as 2011.

By Paul Gaita¿s future. When the Kinks reconvened in late 1966, their first single, "Dead End Street," was a pointed criticism of English class structure, placing them even further from their R&B roots. Again, it reached the Top 10 in the U.K., but only No. 73 in America. Its immediate follow-up, "Waterloo Sunset," was one of Daviesâ¿¿ greatest musical achievements, an achingly gorgeous tone poem about lovers entering the famed Waterloo Station underground terminal as the narrator reflected on the contentment of his simple existence. It reached No. 2 on the Melody Makers chart, and became one of the bandâ¿¿s most admired songs. But it also marked the end of the Kinksâ¿¿ reign on the English charts. Their 1967 single "Autumn Almanac" drew criticism from the British press for sounding too similar to Daviesâ¿¿ previous efforts, and subsequent releases dropped quickly from the charts. But instead of shifting his focus to more pop-friendly material, Davies dug in his heels and began work on a record called Village Green, which would explore in even greater depth the fading traditions of English life.

Village Green became The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society (1968), which was later credited as one of the crowing achievements of their careers. A wistful remembrance of English country life, the record earned near-universal praise from critics, but failed to reverse their fortunes on the U.K. charts. Oddly enough, it revived some interest in the band in America, where the underground press hailed its unique vision, unburdened by popular trends. Davies brokered an end to the American Federation of Musiciansâ¿¿ ban in 1969, which set the stage for a major North American tour to promote their next album, Arthur (Or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire) (1969), which featured the ebullient "Victoria." Originally planned as the score for a television drama, it focused on the Daviesâ¿¿ childhood during the end of World War II and in particular, on their older sister Rosie, who migrated to Australia with her husband in the early 1960s. But the Kinks found relatively few American audiences interested in their distinctly English song cycle, and the tour was deemed a failure.

The Kinks roared back to the charts briefly with "Lola," a rollicking 1970 single about an unwitting romantic encounter with a transvestite that became one of the bandâ¿¿s trademark songs, boosting the accompanying album, Lola Versus Powerman and the Moneygoround (1970) to the Top 40 on the album charts in the U.S. and spurring a new five-album contract with RCA Records. The Kinksâ¿¿ initial efforts for their ne

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
  Return to Waterloo (1985) Director

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Glastonbury (2006)
2.
 Hedd Wyn (1992) Battleground Medical Officer
3.
 Absolute Beginners (1986) Arthur
4.
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