A report on You Really Got Me

Dutch single sleeve

Song written by Ray Davies for English rock band the Kinks.

- You Really Got Me
Dutch single sleeve

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Original line-up in 1965. From left: Pete Quaife, Dave Davies, Ray Davies, Mick Avory.

The Kinks

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English rock band formed in Muswell Hill, north London, in 1963 by brothers Ray and Dave Davies.

English rock band formed in Muswell Hill, north London, in 1963 by brothers Ray and Dave Davies.

Original line-up in 1965. From left: Pete Quaife, Dave Davies, Ray Davies, Mick Avory.
6 Denmark Terrace, the childhood home of the Davies brothers. The front room is where the family's frequent Saturday night parties were held.
Publicity photo taken during a Swedish tour in 1965
Promotional photograph, 1966
Ray Davies plays a Fender acoustic, Dave Davies a prototype Gibson Flying V, on the Dutch TV programme Fenklup on 29 April 1967.
The Kinks, c. 1971. From left: John Gosling, Dave Davies, Mick Avory, John Dalton, Ray Davies (the band's line-up 1970–1976, 1977–1978)
Ray Davies in character as Mr Flash, the anti-hero of the Preservation series
Ray Davies in Brussels, 1985, as the group's popularity began to dwindle
Dave Davies at the Dakota Creek Roadhouse, 2002

Their third single, the Ray Davies-penned "You Really Got Me", became an international hit, topping the charts in the United Kingdom and reaching the Top 10 in the United States.

Davies performing in Toronto, 1977

Ray Davies

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English singer, songwriter and musician.

English singer, songwriter and musician.

Davies performing in Toronto, 1977
6 Denmark Terrace, birthplace of the Davies brothers
Ray Davies with brother Dave in background, performing with the Kinks (Dutch TV, 1967)
Ray Davies performing in Toronto, 1977
Davies at Bluesfest 2008 in Ottawa
Davies "Other People's Lives" tour Commodore Ballroom, Vancouver, BC 2006

After the Kinks obtained a recording contract in early 1964, Davies emerged as the chief songwriter and de facto leader of the band, especially after the band's breakthrough success with his early composition "You Really Got Me", which was released as the band's third single in August of that year.

Judas Priest performing in 2005

Heavy metal music

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Genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the United Kingdom and United States.

Genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the United Kingdom and United States.

Judas Priest performing in 2005
Enid Williams from Girlschool and Lemmy from Motörhead live in 2009. The ties that bind the two bands started in the 1980s and were still strong in the 2010s.
An example of a rhythmic pattern used in heavy metal. The upper stave is a palm-muted rhythm guitar part. The lower stave is the drum part.
Ritchie Blackmore, founder of Deep Purple and Rainbow, known for the neoclassical approach in his guitar performances.
King Diamond, known for writing conceptual lyrics about horror stories
Kiss performing in 2004, wearing makeup
Fans raise their fists and make the "devil horns" gesture at a Metsatöll concert
A heavy metal fan wearing a denim jacket with band patches and artwork of the heavy metal bands Metallica, Guns N' Roses, Iron Maiden, Slipknot, Dio and Led Zeppelin.
Cream performing on the Dutch television program Fanclub in 1968
John Kay of Steppenwolf
Led Zeppelin performing at Chicago Stadium in January 1975
Brian Robertson, Phil Lynott, Scott Gorham of Thin Lizzy performing during the Bad Reputation Tour, 24 November 1977
Iron Maiden, one of the central bands in the new wave of British heavy metal
Drummer Eric Moore from crossover thrash band Suicidal Tendencies
Thrash metal band Slayer performing in 2007 in front of a wall of speaker stacks
Death's Chuck Schuldiner, "widely recognized as the father of death metal"
Italian band Rhapsody of Fire performing in Buenos Aires in 2010
Layne Staley of Alice in Chains, one of the most popular acts identified with alternative metal performing in 1992
Italian gothic metal band Lacuna Coil performing in 2010
Children of Bodom, performing at the 2007 Masters of Rock festival
All-female heavy metal band Kittie performing in 2008

The Kinks played a major role in popularising this sound with their 1964 hit "You Really Got Me".

Promotional photo of Davies in 1971

Dave Davies

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English guitarist, singer and songwriter.

English guitarist, singer and songwriter.

Promotional photo of Davies in 1971
6 Denmark Terrace, birthplace of Dave Davies
Dave Davies & Mick Avory (Dutch TV, 1967)
Davies performing in 1979
A Gibson Flying V

Dave and his brother worked out the famous two-chord riff of their 1964 hit "You Really Got Me" on the piano in the front room.

Vocalist Johnny Rotten and guitarist Steve Jones of the Sex Pistols

Punk rock

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Music genre that emerged in the mid-1970s.

Music genre that emerged in the mid-1970s.

Vocalist Johnny Rotten and guitarist Steve Jones of the Sex Pistols
Characteristic fashion of punks
Iggy Pop, the "godfather of punk"
Facade of legendary music club CBGB, New York
The Clash performing in 1980
The Misfits developed a "horror punk" style in New Jersey.
Flipper, performing in 1984
Debbie Harry performing in Toronto in 1977
Bad Brains at 9:30 Club, Washington, D.C., 1983
Crass were the originators of anarcho-punk. Spurning the "cult of rock star personality", their plain, all-black dress became a staple of the genre.
Ben Weasel of pop punk band Screeching Weasel
Dave Grohl, later of Nirvana, in 1989
Queercore band Pansy Division performing in 2016
Riot grrrl band Bratmobile in 1994
Green Day singer/guitarist Billie Joe Armstrong, with bassist Mike Dirnt to the right
1980s punks with leather jackets and dyed mohawk hairstyles
Rage Against The Machine performing at the Roseland Ballroom in Manhattan, New York. March 1993.

In England, largely under the influence of the mod movement and beat groups, the Kinks' 1964 hit singles "You Really Got Me" and "All Day and All of the Night", were both influenced by "Louie, Louie".

Pete Quaife

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English musician, artist and author.

English musician, artist and author.

Their early singles, including "You Really Got Me" and "All Day and All of the Night", have been cited as an early influence on the hard rock and heavy metal genres.

Van Halen (album)

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Debut studio album by American rock band Van Halen.

Debut studio album by American rock band Van Halen.

The album contains some of the band's most well-known songs, including "Runnin' with the Devil", "Ain't Talkin' 'bout Love", "Jamie's Cryin'", their cover version of the Kinks "You Really Got Me", and the instrumental "Eruption"; played and written by guitarist Eddie Van Halen, it is widely regarded as one of the greatest guitar solos of all time and helped popularize two-handed tapping.

Shel Talmy

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American record producer, songwriter and arranger, best known for his work in the UK in the 1960s with the Who, the Kinks and many others.

American record producer, songwriter and arranger, best known for his work in the UK in the 1960s with the Who, the Kinks and many others.

Talmy arranged and produced hits such as "You Really Got Me" by the Kinks, "My Generation" by the Who, and "Friday on My Mind" by the Easybeats.

Louie Louie

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Rhythm and blues song written and composed by American musician Richard Berry in 1955, recorded in 1956, and released in 1957.

Rhythm and blues song written and composed by American musician Richard Berry in 1955, recorded in 1956, and released in 1957.

"Louie Louie" 10-note riff
Original release
The cover features Black Flag's singer Dez Cadena and some of his improvised lyrics to "Louie Louie".

Sources vary on the impact of "Louie Louie" on the writing of "You Really Got Me" and "All Day and All of the Night".

Drum notation for a back beat

Hard rock

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Loosely defined subgenre of rock music typified by a heavy use of aggressive vocals, distorted electric guitars, bass guitar, and drums, sometimes accompanied with keyboards.

Loosely defined subgenre of rock music typified by a heavy use of aggressive vocals, distorted electric guitars, bass guitar, and drums, sometimes accompanied with keyboards.

Drum notation for a back beat
Baker, Bruce and Clapton of Cream, whose blues rock improvisation was a major factor in the development of the genre
Led Zeppelin live at Chicago Stadium, January 1975
The Who on stage in 1975
Kiss onstage in Boston in 2004
Rush on stage in Milan, Italy, 2004
Poison seen here in 2008, were among the most successful acts of the 1980s glam metal era
Original member Izzy Stradlin' on stage with Guns N' Roses in 2006
Nirvana were at the forefront of the 1990s grunge era
Foo Fighters performing an acoustic show in 2007
Aerosmith performing at Quilmes Rock in Buenos Aires, Argentina on April 15, 2007
Wolfmother, 2007
Golden Earring receives a gold record in 1970

Early forms of hard rock can be heard in the work of Chicago blues musicians Elmore James, Muddy Waters, and Howlin' Wolf, the Kingsmen's version of "Louie Louie" (1963) which made it a garage rock standard, and the songs of rhythm and blues influenced British Invasion acts, including "You Really Got Me" by the Kinks (1964), "My Generation" by the Who (1965), "Shapes of Things" (1966) by the Yardbirds, "Inside Looking Out" (1966) by the Animals, "Twist and Shout" by The Beatles, and "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" (1965) by the Rolling Stones.