Interview - 12 September, 1997, London

Andy Broughton from Virgin Net interviews Ray Davies at his book signing at the Virgin Megastore in London.

1. Which of the Kinks contemporaries do you admire most?
Ray Davies: The Motown crowd in the 60's, The Punk crowd in the 70's and the Brit-Pop crowd in the 90's.

2. Any guesses as to when your solo album will be ready for release? What can you tell us about it?
Ray Davies: First album 'X-Ray' live in January '98... 'Ray Davies' studio album due end of '98.

3. In "Holiday In Waikiki" from Face To Face, what is the line that precedes "And in a little shack they have a little sign that says Coca Cola"? It sounds like "It's a hooka hooka on the shiny briny on a wake a hola," but that doesn't make sense.
Ray Davies: Doesn't seem to does it?

4. I've heard that the reason the CD reissues of the early albums don't sound too good is that Pye lost the original master tapes. Is that true?
Ray Davies: I will have to ask about that.

5. I've also heard that the reason we won't see a "Kinks Anthology" like the Beatles have with alternate takes and unreleased songs is because Pye reused tapes and taped over the original recordings. How true is this?
Ray Davies:Sounds Possible. I think they have released everything they have.

6. Now that you have a new book out, are you going to continue doing your "An Evening With/20th Century Man/Storyteller" shows? If so, are you going in incorporate material from the new book?
Ray Davies: Yes; for the time being.

7. There's a web site on the Internet that has the lyrics to all your songs available without permission from the publishers. How do you feel about that?
Ray Davies: Not great but there is nothing I can do... Is there?... What do I do? Sue Bill Gates?

8. What are your feelings on the current bands drawing on the 60's and especially 'Mod' you have a favourite current band?
Ray Davies: Ocean Colour Scene, Reef, verve, Blur and the Pansies.

9. Waterloo sunset is cited by Paul Weller as his all time favourite record. Are you a fan of Pauls work?
Ray Davies: I follow his career with pride.

10. The Small Faces Marriot/Lane lyrics are often very similar to your own, drawing on music hall influences. Do you attribute this to your upbringing in London?
Ray Davies: I think they are more 'Urban' sounding, I am more 'Suburban'.

11. Do you use the Internet at all?
Ray Davies: I have a modem and four computers but nothing is plugged up... yet.

12. I've recently seen a number of tribute bands to The Who and Small Faces capitalising on the mod revival... are there any Kinks tribute bands that you have seen perform?
Ray Davies: people who copy the Kinks usually never acknowledge us.

13. Have you seen the film Austin Powers?..shades of dedicated follower of fashion there.
Ray Davies: I thought it was also like the 'Mike Flowers Pops'.

14. Can you give us a brief summary of the new book.
Ray Davies:Short stories based on songs, linked by a songwriter who is escaping from his past, haunted by one of the characters from it.