The Kinks 'deeply saddened' as band member dies with Ray Davies leading tributes

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The Kinks
The Kinks 'deeply saddened' as band member dies with Ray Davies leading tributes

The Kinks have paid tribute to former band member John Gosling, after it was revealed the keyboard player has died at the age of 75.

In a statement posted to the band's official social media pages, they told fans: "We are deeply saddened by the news of the passing of John Gosling. We are sending our condolences to John's wife and family."

Lead singer Ray Davies said: "Condolences to his wife Theresa and family. Rest in Peace dearest John." Ray's younger brother Dave Davies added: "I’m dismayed deeply upset by John Gosling’s passing. He has been a friend and important contributor to the Kinks music during his time with us. Deepest sympathies to his wife and family. I will hold deep affection and love for him in my heart always. Great musician and a great man."

Gosling played keyboard with the band between 1970 and 1978 playing on ten albums and contributing to the demo for Lola which went on to become one of the band's biggest hits.

Recalling his audition for the north London band, Gosling said: ""They seemed such an easy-going bunch of blokes! Dave handed me a beer from a crate in the middle of the room when I walked in and there was no starry behaviour. I remember feeling completely at home – almost as if I'd always been there."

He was later replaced by Gordon Edwards of Pretty Things before retiring from music in 2008.

Discussing his impact on the band, Gosling said: "I think I must have had quite a lot of influence in retrospect, but it wasn’t really intentional. It just seemed that the band's musical style was mutating just as it did when Ray changed his writing style the first time, and we were all developing together as musicians."

Drummer Mick Avory also paid tribute to Gosling after his death, saying: "Today we lost a dear friend and colleague, he was a great musician and had a fantastic sense of humour... which made him popular member of the band, he leaves us with some happy memories. God Bless him."

The Kinks 'deeply saddened' as band member dies with Ray Davies leading tributes erideuiqtqiqdrinvThe Kinks, from left, Mick Avory, Pete Quaife, Dave Davies and Ray Davies on Top Of The Pops in May 1967 (Redferns)

The Kinks were formed by the Davies brothers in north London in 1963. Ray and Dave went on to have a turbulent relationship before splitting the band in 1996.

Though the brothers reunited in 2020 to work on a 50th anniversary reissue of their eighth studio album – Lola Versus Powerman And The Moneygoround, Part One – which satirised the music industry, the sexual revolution of the 1960s and life on the road.

Dave also revealed he had 'no hard feelings' about his brother when he was knighted in the same year.

He told the PA news agency: “With the Stones it was Mick Jagger, but they didn’t bother with the others. It’s more symbolic than anything.

“It’s like a nod to The Kinks because Ray is the frontman and he wrote most of the songs. It’s more symbolic. I am glad he did.

“I am glad he received a knighthood but I’m still waiting for mine. It’s in the post.”

Dave also spoke about the band's hit Lola, written by Ray in the early 1970 and recorded at Morgan Studios in London, telling the story of a meeting between a young man and a transgender person in a Soho club, inspired by a rumoured encounter by the band’s manager in Paris.

Dave said it was “curious” how the track had pre-empted the start of a mainstream debate about trans issues.

He added: “It was the newness of the ideas. Since the beginning of when we first got involved in music in ‘63 right through.

“It is like you are searching for an identity musically and sexually as well. It was very much like that.”

Lucy Needham

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