The Kinks Newcastle City Hall 1976 Schoolboys in Disgrace

The Kinks Newcastle City Hall 1976 Schoolboys in Disgrace
kinkstix76 In 1976 The Kinks toured to present another concept album “Schoolboys in Disgrace”. This was another in a series of concept albums which started with Village Green Preservation Society in the late 60s and continued through the mid 70s. The line-up of the Kinks at the time was the same as I had seen in 1975, and they were again augmented by a brass section, and backing vocalists. The story of “Schoolboys in Disgrace” is as follows: “Once upon a time there was a naughty little schoolboy. He and his gang were always playing tricks on the teachers and bullying other children in the school. One day he got himself into very serious trouble with a naughty schoolgirl and he was sent to the Headmaster who decided to disgrace the naughty boy and his gang in front of the whole school. After this punishment the boy turned into a hard and bitter character. Perhaps it was not the punishment that changed him but the fact that he realised people in authority would always be there to kick him down and the Establishment would always put him in his place. He knew that he could not change the past but he vowed that in the future he would always get what he wanted. The naughty little boy grew up… into Mr Flash.” (Ray Davies, 1975). kinksprogschoolboys Mr Flash had appeared before in the Kinks stories, as the villain from The Kinks’ rock opera Preservation. The front cover of the album, and hence of my copy of the programme shown here, was illustrated by Colin ‘Mickey’ Finn, a London illustrator, who also created the two delivery men characters used in the dire Straits video ‘ Money for Nothing’. The tour presented the album in its entirety, with use of visuals and props, and was great fun. The song that sticks out for me is “Jack the Idiot Dunce”, which I thought was great fun at the time. I’m not sure who portrayed the idiot dunce on the tour; possibly Dave. In 1978 the Finnish band Kontra had a number one hit in Finland with the a cover of the song. As with the 1975 tour, I don’t recall them playing any old favourites. I managed to find one setlist which suggests that they played the whole album, with “Money Talks” from Preservation 2 (which also features Flash) as an encore. Setlist: Schooldays Overture; Jack the Idiot Dunce; Education; The First Time We Fall in Love; I’m in Disgrace; Headmaster; Hard Way; The Last Assembly; No More Looking Back; Schoolboys Finale. Encore: Money Talks.

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