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Author Topic: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset  (Read 1154 times)

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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« on: February 25, 2017, 08:19:35 PM »

"Waterloo Sunset" is a beautiful ballad by the Kinks, perhaps the most acclaimed song written by Ray Davies. It was released as a single in May 1967, being well received in UK, where it reached #2. However, Americans seemed to have lost interest in the band at that point, since the single did not chart in US. Nevertheless, the song was a top 10 hit in several countries from Europe and Oceania. The lyrics reflect the point of view of a lonely narrator describing two lovers and the common paradise they found by gazing on Waterloo sunset. Musically, the song is as melodic as a ballad could be and includes some of the best backing vocals the group has ever recorded. An unforgettable gem from the unforgettable 60's.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YpL4xbfmXlQ" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YpL4xbfmXlQ</a>
« Last Edit: February 25, 2017, 08:25:14 PM by Hombre_de_ningun_lugar »
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tkitna

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2017, 08:43:11 PM »

Great song, but I do feel its a tad overrated.  It gets labelled as their masterpiece and I dont feel it reaches those levels.

Moogmodule

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2017, 09:00:20 PM »

I love this one. Always have. I didn't realise how late it was released though. Sonically I'd have placed it around 1965.  Regardless, the melody is gorgeous and Ray Davies had his talent for lucid, real-life lyrics on full display.
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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2017, 09:02:56 PM »

Great song, but I do feel its a tad overrated.  It gets labelled as their masterpiece and I dont feel it reaches those levels.

I tend to agree with the spirit of your words, not because I think this song is overrated but because I think other songs by the Kinks are underrated in comparison.
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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2017, 09:14:15 PM »

I love this one. Always have. I didn't realise how late it was released though. Sonically I'd have placed it around 1965.  Regardless, the melody is gorgeous and Ray Davies had his talent for lucid, real-life lyrics on full display.

Yes, in the late-60's the Kinks were not up to date in terms of revolutionary sound. They occasionally had slight touches of psychedelia. It's not a surprise that a wonderful album like The Village Green Preservation Society resulted to be unsuccessful in 1968, needing time to get the deserved recognition.
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In My Life

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2017, 09:50:23 PM »

Learning that this song didn't take off here in the US explains why I wasn't familiar with it until fairly recently. I liked it a lot the first time I heard it, though. It's one that gets stuck in my head, in a good way. After I heard it I wanted find out what else I'd been missing from them. So I did!
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Kelley

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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2017, 09:54:30 PM »

Learning that this song didn't take off here in the US explains why I wasn't familiar with it until fairly recently. I liked it a lot the first time I heard it, though. It's one that gets stuck in my head, in a good way. After I heard it I wanted find out what else I'd been missing from them. So I did!

Did you find something else by the Kinks, Kelley? ;)
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In My Life

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2017, 10:10:00 PM »

Did you find something else by the Kinks, Kelley? ;)

I just did Andrés! I had downloaded a greatest hits album from Amazon but it expired. However, I just found an anthology that's got even more to hear; over 100 songs. But listening to the original albums, the way nature intended, is definitely on the agenda.
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Kelley

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2017, 11:04:05 PM »

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sj_9CiNkkn4" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sj_9CiNkkn4</a>





ooops, wrong Waterloo.  But Bobber will like their boots.   ;D
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tkitna

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #9 on: February 26, 2017, 01:02:57 AM »

I tend to agree with the spirit of your words, not because I think this song is overrated but because I think other songs by the Kinks are underrated in comparison.

Exactly.  That's what I meant to say.  I feel there are a ton of Kinks songs that are musically better than Waterloo.

zipp

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #10 on: February 26, 2017, 02:50:53 PM »

A fantastic song.

There's some discussion that it was originally called and so about Liverpool Sunset but no one explains in that case why the lyrics mention Waterloo undergound. There's no underground railway system in Liverpool!

Here's some stuff from Ray himself :

Ray Davies (From Uncut magazine January 2009): "It came to me first as a statement about the death of Merseybeat. But I realized that Waterloo was a very significant place in my life. I was in St. Thomas' Hospital when I was really ill as a child, and I looked out on the river. I went to Waterloo every day to go to college as well. The song was also about being taken to the Festival of Britain with my mum and dad. I remember them taking me by the hand, looking at the big Skylon tower, and saying it symbolized the future. That, and then walking by the Thames with my first wife (Rasa, who left Ray, taking his two daughters, in 1973) and all the other dreams that we had. Her in her brown suede coat that she wore, that was stolen. And also about my sisters, and about the world I wanted them to have. The two characters in the song, Terry and Julie, are to do with the aspirations of my sisters' generation, who grew up during the Second world War and missed out on the '60s."

The hospital, the Festival of Britain, the Thames and crossing the river presumably on Waterloo Bridge all indicate that the song is about London.

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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #11 on: February 26, 2017, 04:30:29 PM »

Maybe "Liverpool Sunset" was the original idea, and Ray decided to change to London before completing the lyrics.

With regard to Ray's wife Rasa Davies, it's said that she sang backing vocals in "Waterloo Sunset". If that's true, she did a substantial contribution to the recording.
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zipp

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #12 on: February 26, 2017, 05:19:50 PM »

With regard to Ray's wife Rasa Davies, it's said that she sang backing vocals in "Waterloo Sunset". If that's true, she did a substantial contribution to the recording.

Yes she sang on it and made a great contribution to this and other songs.

What's even more amazing is that Rasa came from my hometown of Bradford in the North of England. Ray and Rasa had secret meetings in a park before they got married. The park was across the road from my school!
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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #13 on: February 26, 2017, 11:00:05 PM »

What's even more amazing is that Rasa came from my hometown of Bradford in the North of England. Ray and Rasa had secret meetings in a park before they got married. The park was across the road from my school!

Thus, Ray and Rasa may have been gazing on Bradford sunset!
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zipp

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #14 on: February 27, 2017, 12:18:22 AM »

Or on my old school.  ;)
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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #15 on: February 27, 2017, 03:53:08 AM »

^

 ;D

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #16 on: February 27, 2017, 04:01:02 AM »

It was released as a single in May 1967, being well received in UK, where it reached #2. However, Americans seemed to have lost interest in the band at that point, since the single did not chart in US.

We didn't lose interest in The Kinks.  Fans were buying their LPs.  It appeared on Something Else by The Kinks.  This fine ballad was a nice way to end the album.
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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #17 on: March 01, 2017, 05:10:45 PM »

We didn't lose interest in The Kinks.  Fans were buying their LPs.  It appeared on Something Else by The Kinks.  This fine ballad was a nice way to end the album.


Surely American fans continued buying albums by the Kinks. Buy they were a minority in 1967, since Something Else had a poor chart performance in US (#153). The good times of "You Really Got Me", "All Day And All Of The Night" and "Tired Of Waiting For You" were already gone in America.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EqrwsGrfv7M" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EqrwsGrfv7M</a>


;)

The Kinks returned to the top 10 in US with the single "Lola" in 1970.
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Hello Goodbye

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #18 on: March 02, 2017, 06:44:10 AM »

Surely American fans continued buying albums by the Kinks. Buy they were a minority in 1967, since Something Else had a poor chart performance in US (#153). The good times of "You Really Got Me", "All Day And All Of The Night" and "Tired Of Waiting For You" were already gone in America.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EqrwsGrfv7M#

;)

The Kinks returned to the top 10 in US with the single "Lola" in 1970.


#153 wasn't too bad considering the trend in music from 1967 to 1970.  The growing number of FM radio stations also helped to keep The Kinks popular.


Lola had three things going for it in record sales:

1. It was a good song
2. It was banned on many radio stations
3. The Coca-Cola thing.  Everyone wanted a copy of the Coca-Cola record when they heard the cherry cola version
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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Classic 60's songs: Waterloo Sunset
« Reply #19 on: March 02, 2017, 12:14:09 PM »

#153 was bad in comparison to the chart performance the Kinks had had previously, even though they never were very strong selling albums in US. Their singles were more successful than albums in 1964-1966. Of course, rock music fans such as FM listeners may have kept some interest in the band; but the fact is that much less Americans were buying records (singles or albums) by the Kinks in 1967.
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