The Front Room (dialog)

Written by: Ray Davies

Published by: Davray Music Ltd.


It was back to the drawing board, and I think it was out of frustration
we wanted to sound as distorted as Chuck Berry's guitar on Memphis
Tennessee. We played the record so many times on that old radiogram
and so loud, that some of the speakers were crackling in the radiogram,
completely distorted. And the valves were rattling in the machine.
So, in fact, you know, God save the Queen sounded like Chuck Berry.
Everything sounded really distorted. And Dave and I thought
"How can we make the green amp sound that distorted?".
So Dave took one of mums knitting-needles and he stuck it into the
speakers of the little green amp. The Dave played a chord. Pfft.
It sounded great, yes! Brilliant. That's the sound.
Dave rechristened the green amp "the fart box".
Now as I said the front room was a place where we had celebrations
usually, singsongs.
When we very young, when I was 13 years old, our oldest sister came
back from Canada where she had emigrated after the war and she died
in tragic circumstances. So at the age of 30 she was burried and we had
a new experience in the front room: a wake.
But Dave and I were surprised that these adults, still drinking and singing
songs. We thought that was odd as they were all dressed in black,
that it was a sad time.
It's hard to describe the front room. It had a really magical quality to it,
really spiritual in a way. I went to a church school, but the closest I felt to
religion was not when I was singing in the school choir or when I was at
Sunday school which I always went to. But it was more when I rehearsed
with Dave in the front room.

This song can be found on the following releases:

live, stereo mix (2:09), recorded 1997 at unknown venue, overdubs at Konk Studios, Hornsey, London
The Storyteller 21 Apr, 1998 USA Konk/EMI-Capital 7243 4 94168 2 6 CD
E-mail Dave Emlen