We are the skyskraper condemnation affiliate

THAT mouthful of a blogpost title is lifted straight from a work of beauty by The Kinks, the sublime Village Green Preservation Society album track released in 1968. The song is a dreamy call for the world just to slow down a little and save the things we treasure most from developers and modernity. Which is exactly what folk in Crouch End seem to think about the potential sale of The Kinks’s legendary Konk studios, the scene of so many historic cuts by the band and other international artists. Ray Davies, too often unsung, is reported to be ready to sell by the Hornsey Journal.

So, full marks to Crouch End Labour councillor David Winskill for his comments in the newspaper’s article. I love it when a local politician dusts off the suit and tie and gets all rock n roll cool – or at least tries to. It must be true – surely? – that councillors have record collections at home as well, and not just piles of agendas and council papers and bookcases full of political biographies. If not, I implore them all to chuck out their Mandelson and Campbell tomes, and go buy a Kinks record instead.

The hip councillor from Crouch End laments:

I think it’s possible that if this had happened in any other country there would have been an enormous campaign to preserve this as some kind of national monument. The Kinks have been an integral part of the cultural landscape of this part of London for the best part of 50 years.Their contribution to pop culture has been overshadowed by The Rolling Stones and The Beatles but their song making has been absolutely amazing. It’s really sad that this physical link is likely to disappear – but, as they, the music lingers on.

He’s right. The Kinks’s contribution is too often overlooked because of the success of those other bands. Ray’s song-writing, in reality, is hardly bettered. If the words of VG Preservation Society are anything to go by, however, he’d be happier if the next owner of his recording studios steered clear of a skyskraper for Hornsey. Long live Donald Duck, vaudeville and variety… Help save Fu Manchu, Moriaty and Dracula!


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