Sunday, November 8, 2015

Coffee, Tea and Dave Davies in NYC Coffee, Tea and Dave Davies - interview and photos by Rebecca G. Wilson June 2013

This article first appeared in 2013 when Dave and I first got together.

I caught up with Dave Davies from the Kinks in NYC during his weeklong stay here playing at the City Winery.  His current U.S. tour backed by members of the Jigsaw Seen is a triumphant return to the stage to support his new album "I Will Be Me" on Cleopatra Records.  His shows became progressively more amazing starting with his reading lyrics from a music stand that disappeared as he got his groove back after the first shows.  Some highlights were his performances of tracks like 'I'm Not Like Everybody Else' and 'Living On a Thin Line' that seemed to warm up to a seamless smokin' performance at June 4th's outdoor show.  Songs like 'Healing Boy' from the new record sounded great also.  He brought many crowd members up to the microphone throughout his shows to sing with him.  It was quite a thrill when I got to gogo dance onstage to his wild guitar during 'You Really Got Me' on his last evening gig.

DD in Soho photo by Rebecca G. Wilson

Jonathan Lea, Dave Davies and Tom Currier May 2013 photo by Rebecca G. Wilson

While in NYC I met up with him for an impromptu interview, photo shoot and discussion of a book project we had been working on for a while.  We walked around and got lost in Soho (since neither of us knew our way around once we wandered below Canal Street).  People did double takes at him and one guy walked by with a female companion and exclaimed, "That's Ray Davies!"  Ever the gentleman, Dave ignored or didn't hear the comment.  

He may be 66 years old but he has the energy of a teenager. It is hard to believe that he suffered a massive stroke in 2004.  He seemed a bit anxious about his upcoming first gig. At one point he turned and looked at me with those dandy bluegreen eyes and asked,"Can I cut it?"  I realized no matter how famous and respected the star, anyone can get performance anxiety.  We stared in shop windows and ogled Chinatown doodads while I muttered, "where are we?" and he queried an existential, "who am I?"  It made sense that his new album is titled "I Will Be Me".

photo by Rebecca G. Wilson

me and DD lost in Chinatown . . .
After finding a cafe he ordered a cappucinno, "one coffee a day," he said was his limit.  I had a cuppa tea.  Dave is a vegetarian and we split a mushroom cheese quiche and a chocolate rugelah pastry.  "Too sweet," he remarked.  We talked about all sorts of subjects including the internet.  His nickname for facebook is fakebook.  I noticed how much attention he receives online and asked him if he worried about over zealous fans and he replied simply, "They don't know where I live." 

Jonathan Lea, Tom Currier, Dave Davies May 2013 photo by Rebecca G. Wilson

Jonathan Lea, Teddy Freese, Dave Davies at City Winery 6/4/13 photo by RGW
We also discussed random questions that are part of an upcoming book project.  Here is an excerpt from those conversations from the past year.

RGW - I think there's something magical about appearance, you know, putting an outfit together, it's like an artform -

DD - Well of course it is!  But also, what were we trying to dress up as?  I think the hardest thing is to realize that we really need to address what we are inside first and then we can wear anything - we can wear a tree on our head!  You know, or wear, trousers, shoes, I don't know, it's like that's what we have to really find out - who the hell we are (laughs) and then we can wear anything!

RGW - Yeah

DD - I mean, that was the idea behind the punk thing in the late 70s
in England anyway.

RGW - Is that you in drag in the blonde wig in the film for the Kinks' song Dead End Street?

DD - Yeah, (laughs) but that’s different.  That's kinda like acting
out, trying to act out a role - that's not quite the same thing.

RGW - Tell us about your new album "I Will Be Me". Is it a return to your blues and rock sound?

DD - Well, yes, It's kind of a mixture of everything.  It's like um, There's some hard rock, there's some little bluesy tracks, but I tried to keep it, the subjects in line with how I think now.  There's a track I've written called Little Green Amp and it's about the little green amp.  It always makes me smile so it's a good idea.  I find that things that make me amused, they have longevity.

RGW -  Do you still have that little green Elpico amp?

DD - no, Ray pinched it. 

RGW - Okay, I have some questions from your fans.

DD - Oh good! 

RGW -  Mick Kiff asked -

DD - oh sweet guy, hi Mick!  

RGW - when is the new lp out in the U.K. and what do you think of Think Visual, his Top 40 show?

DD - I think it's fabulous, it's wonderful to have people like Mick who are so dedicated and so infused and inspired by our music - and I've got a personal love of that album Think Visual.  I thought it was a great record and Ray was going through a good writing sound at that time.  I love that.  I wrote some songs that I like that didn't get on it.  Close to Wire or something, I can't remember, Mick Kiff could tell you.  But that's great, I think he's doing a good job, a great job.  

Everybody's looking back because they're scared to look forward and that's why there's so much nostalgia but if it's good nostalgia, it's like a painting and a great painting's still great if it's great whether it was painted five hundred years ago or last week so good art deserves to stay in people's minds and hearts because it teaches us things good art always is a good teacher, the best teacher probably apart from nature?  So you get more organic teaching. Mick Kiff, I like his stuff.

RGW - Geordi Mitchell asks is your health okay?

DD - well, I seem ok - been doing concerts at the satsangs, I've just made an album, I got to finish it off yet, tidying up process of songs and tracks working it for nearly a year, and I'm very excited about it because, um, it feels right, you know, that sounds corny, sometimes if you don't feel right about something you can't do it, I can't, I'm a very feeling oriented or focused person, if it don't feel right I can't do it or I find it difficult, if you get in tune with the right kind of feeling, it becomes inspiring and you can ride the wave as it goes, so I feel good yeah I’m healthy I go for walks and, um, I work and write, I work all the time, I play, don't practice much.

to be continued . . .

DD says ciao - photo by RGW 

1 comment:

  1. Casino Bonus codes, free spins, no deposit bonuses 2021
    Casino Bonus Codes · 1. Unibet - £200 free chip OR £5 NO DEPOSIT BONUS 올레 벳 · 2. PRAGMATIC PLAY - £20 free chip OR £5 NO DEPOSIT 바카라게임사이트 BONUS · 더킹 바카라 3. PRAGMATIC PLAY - £10 슈어 벳 no 바카라 양방 deposit