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A Rockapaedia Obituary

Pete Quaife

Band: The Kinks

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Pete Quaife, died aged sixty-six of kidney failure on 23photo of Pete Quaiferd June 2010. Two days after his death, Kink's Dave Davies posted a statement on his message board expressing his deep sorrow over the death of his former bandmate and lauding him for his friendship, personality, talent, and contributions to The Kinks' sound. He stated that Pete Quaife "was never really given the credit he deserved for his contribution and involvement with The Kinks. Ray Davies dedicated his 27th June performance at the Glastonbury Festival to him and performed several Quaife-era Kinks songs in tribute to him. Ray told the crowd that he wouldn't be here today if it wasn't for Pete, and was visibly close to tears as he sang the opening line to "Days".
Pete Quaife was born on 31st December 1943. He founded a group known as The Ravens in 1963 with brothers Ray and Dave Davies. In late 1963 or early 1964, they changed their name to The Kinks, and hired Mick Avory as a drummer. The group scored major international hit records throughout the 1960s. 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. In the band's early days, Pete Quaife, who was generally regarded as the best-looking member, was often their spokesman. Following a ban from touring the United States in 1965, The Kinks focused their efforts on the UK market. Singles such as "Sunny Afternoon" in 1966 and "Waterloo Sunset" in1967 showcased lead singer Ray Davies' observational writing style and became Top Ten hits throughout Europe and the UK. Pete Quaife played an important role on the group's influential album The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society, which featured a strong theme of nostalgia. Pete departed from The Kinks in 1969 and formed the band Mapleoak.

After retiring from the music business, Pete Quaife resided in Denmark throughout the 1970s. He relocated to Belleville, Ontario in 1980, where he worked as a cartoonist and artist but moved back to Denmark in 2005.

Pete Quaife was born Peter Alexander Greenlaw Kinnes in Tavistock, Devon, to Joan Mary Kilby, who became pregnant during the war after an affair with an American serviceman. Joan Kilby returned to London with her son, where she married Stanley Melville Quaife in 1947, who gave his surname to the young Peter who attended Coldfall Primary School in Muswell Hill and later William Grimshaw School (now Fortismere School) where a plaque has been erected to his memory. After a brief period studying commercial art, he formed The Kinks in 1962 along with school friend Ray Davies and subsequently asked Ray's brother Dave Davies to join. The band was originally called The Ravens and performed rhythm and blues at local venues includingthe Hornsey Recreation Club at Crouch End Secondary School. The 'Kinks' name came about only upon the signing of a recording contract in late 1963.

The Kinks became a top chart act throughout the world beginning with their third single, 1964's "You Really Got Me". Pete was commonly the voice of the band in early press interviews. In June 1966, he was seriously injured in a car crash, which left him unable to perform. He later said that he had enjoyed the time off from the band, as he was sick of the constant conflict. John Dalton replaced him, as Pete then resigned from the Kinks as a result of his hospitalisation, but he reconsidered and returned to them in November 1966.

For the next two years Pete Quaife played on albums including Something Else by the Kinks and The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society. Pete left The Kinks permanently in April 1969, but the other members did not initially believe him, and only realised his intention when they saw an article in a music paper revealing his new band. Ray Davies asked him to change his mind and stay, but without success. He was again replaced on bass, this time permanently, by John Daltimage of Pete Quaiffeon.

After leaving The Kinks, Pete Quaife founded a new country/rock band called Mapleoak. Pete had contacts in Denmark, so the group gigged heavily there and in the UK during most of 1969 and early 1970. Mapleoak released their first single, "Son of a Gun", in April 1970 but it failed to chart. Pete then left both the band and the music industry and subsequently moved to Denmark.

Pete Quaife never fully returned to the music world as a professional performer. In 1980, he relocated to Belleville, Ontario, Canada to work as a graphic artist. In Nineteen eighty-one, he made his only post 1960s concert appearance with The Kinks, playing bass in an encore number at a show in Toronto. Along with the original Kinks, Pete was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Nineteen-ninety.

Pete was diagnosed with renal failure in 1998. During dialysis sessions, he drew a series of cartoons based on his experiences. Following their enthusiastic reception by other patients, they have subsequently been published in book form as 'The Lighter Side of Dialysis' .

Pete Quaife lived in Canada for more than two decades, but he moved back to Denmark in 2005 after his marriage ended in divorce, to live with his girlfriend Elisabeth Bilbo, whom he had known since she was a 19-year-old Kinks fan. At the time of his death, they had become engaged to marry.

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song: 'Sunny Afternoon' by The Kinks