#1 UK Singles Chart #1 Canada Top Singles #1 Norway #1 Netherlands #1 Ireland #11 US Cash Box Top 100 #14 US Billboard Hot 100.. The Kinks were one of the most influential English rock bands of the 1960s and were a part of the British Invasion in the United States. Formed in 1964 in Muswell Hill, North London, by brothers Ray Davies and Dave Davies, the band was influenced by a variety of genres ranging from R&B and rock and roll to British music hall, folk and country. Unlike their contemporaries, their music was drenched in the English culture and their lyrics reflected the English lifestyle. The Kinks may not have gained the glamour and the mammoth riches of The Beatles and Rolling Stones, but they did gather up more critical appreciation than everyone else. By using the Davies brothers’ pop sensibilities and caustic wit, The Kinks forged a career not built out of marketing or clever promotion but of authentic and sincere songs. One such track is their iconic number ‘Sunny Afternoon’. The Kinks were in the midst of a sudden rise to stardom, but group tensions, lawsuits, an unrealistic workload and craven management made them miserable. Davies was also dealing with fatherhood, and left the band for a while. Ray Davies was suffering from a bad cold on the day he recorded this song. “I did it in one take and when I heard it back I said, ‘No, let me do it properly,’ but the session was out of time.
So that was the vocal. I heard it again the other day. I was 22 but I sound like someone about 40 who’s been through the mill. I really hang on some of the notes. A joyous song, though, even if it’s suppressed joy. I had real fun writing that.” Backing vocalists on this track were Dave Davies, bass player Pete Quaife, and Ray Davies’ wife at the time, Rasa. The success of “Sunny Afternoon” — especially the fact that it knocked the Beatles’ “Paperback Writer” off the top of the UK charts, which Davies considered “one of the joys of my life” — revitalized the Kinks frontman, snapping him out of his funk and inspiring him to focus on the sort of satirical, very English slices of life that would become synonymous with the band’s golden years
Credit The Kinks