Klassics set for Kings Heath

Landmark Kings Heath gig to be commemorated.

Fifty years after making his debut with The Kinks at the old Ritz Ballroom, bass guitarist John Dalton will be returning along with other ex-Kinks members to headline a special KinKs Heath Fest on Sunday 12th June.

“We played at the Ritz on 11th June 1966. Back then it happened so quickly. I met The Kinks on Thursday, had Friday to learn the music and then played with them on Saturday night. I can remember being very nervous because I had only known the band for two days. It was very hectic”
, recalls John Dalton, “It will be great coming back to King’s Heath. To still be playing fifty years later, enjoying myself so much and coming back to where it all started is unbelievable. I consider myself very privileged. It will also bring back very fond memories to me because all my relations come from just up the road in Balsall Heath and I used to spend all my childhood holidays there”.

Kings Heath is set to become KinKs Heath for the day with the celebrations starting at 3pm at Fletchers Bar in York Road where local musicians will play their favourite Kinks songs in a three hour Kinda Kinks session and ending at 7.30 pm with the concert by Kast Off Kinks at the Hare & Hounds. John will be joined on stage by original drummer Mick Avory who also played at the Ritz Ballroom gig, keyboard player Ian Gibbons and lead guitarist and vocalist Dave Clarke.

The Kinks’ appearance at The Ritz came just after they released Sunny Afternoon which became their third UK number one. All their greatest hits will be included in the set that Kast Off Kinks will perform at the Hare & Hounds.

Local residents Bob Prew and Ken Whittaker who have organised the event said, “We want to create a real party atmosphere in KinKs Heath throughout the day. While there will lots of events celebrating the Queen’s 90th Birthday that weekend, we want to bring royalists and republicans together to commemorate an historic gig by the quintessential English band who recorded hit singles like Waterloo Sunset and concept albums such as The Village Green Preservation Society.

“We are encouraging everyone to dress up in 1960’s style clothes and there will be spot prizes at both events for the Best Dressed Dedicated Follower of Fashion. We believe that being able to watch and listen to ex- Kinks members perform in the intimate atmosphere of the Hare & Hounds will be a great finale to our one day celebration. The Kinks are one of the most important British groups of all time and they continue to have a major influence on today’s music scene”.

Tickets for the concert by The Kast Off Kinks cost £15 plus a booking fee from www.hareandhoundskingsheath.co.uk or £15 cash from the Kitchen Garden Cafe in King’s Heath’s York Road. Tickets for the afternoon concert at Fletchers cost £4 cash from the Kitchen Garden Cafe or £4.40 from www.wegottickets.com