The Kinks

Songs of the Semi-Detached

Mark Doyle

The Kinks

Mark Doyle

Distributed for Reaktion Books

256 pages | 40 halftones | 5 3/4 x 8 1/4
Paper $16.00 ISBN: 9781789142303 Will Publish April 2020 For sale in North and South America only
Of all the great British rock bands to emerge from the 1960s, none had a stronger sense of place than the Kinks. Often described as the archetypal English band, they were above all a quintessentially working-class band with a deep attachment to London, particularly the patch of suburban North London where most of the members grew up. In this illuminating study, Mark Doyle examines the relationship between the Kinks and their city, from their early songs of teenage rebellion to their later album-length works of social criticism, providing a unique perspective on the way in which the band responded to the shifting nature of working-class life. Along the way, he finds fascinating and sometimes surprising connections with figures as diverse as Edmund Burke, John Clare, Charles Dickens, and the Covent Garden Community Association. More than just a book about the Kinks, this is a book about a city, a nation, and a social class undergoing a series of profound, sometimes troubling changes—and about a group of young men who found a way to describe, lament, and occasionally even celebrate those changes through song.
Contents
Introduction: A Face in the Crowd 1 The North London Post-war Affluent Society Blues 2 The Kinks vs Swinging London 3 Ready, Steady, Stop! (or, Rock Music as Historic Preservation) 4 The Glory of Being Boring 5 Muswell Hillbillies vs Big Brother Epilogue References Select Bibliography Select Discography Acknowledgements Photo Acknowledgements Index
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