Lost & Found: Have You Seen the Kinks’ Piano-Playing Gorilla?
Compared to the other people onstage and the people in the audience, the piano player in the above video really is an apeman. He does have a nice comfy-looking Hawaiian shirt on, though. So he’s probably pretty advanced as far as apemen go. He also seems to be doing a good job playing along with the Kinks.
According to the words sung by Kinks leader Ray Davies, though, we’re all apemen when compared to the other wonders of nature. We guess that means everything is relative. As Davies so eloquently states in the 1970 song, “Compared to the flowers and the birds and the trees, I am an apeman.” George Carlin mirrored this sentiment 35 years later when he said, “We’re barely out of the jungle.”
The Kinks didn’t seem so skeptical when they first started out. At first, the band seemed content to write catchy songs about girls like everyone else. They broke onto the scene with ‘You Really Got Me,’ which blew the world’s collective mind. The track ‘All Day and All of the Night’ was as much of a rocker as ‘You Really Got Me,’ if not slightly more complex. These kinds of tracks kept the band in the upper echelons of the Billboard charts for a while.
As the Kinks evolved, they began to slip away from the coveted Top 100 bracket. Even though they may have sacrificed a bit of radio airplay, the Kinks recorded some of the best albums ever to be associated with rock ‘n’ roll. ‘The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society,’ considered by many Kinks fans to be one of their best albums, didn’t even make it onto the charts when it came out in 1968. Check out the title track.