Letter: Pete Townshend Co-Signs The Kinks, 1969


We hear so much salacious gossip about feuds between musicians that this letter, spotted by Letters of Note, is a welcome antidote to all the negativity. Pete Townshend wrote his missive of praise for The Kinks after they supported The Who in Chicago, on Halloween 1969. Apparently, Ray Davies and co. were opening for a band that used to open for them because they’d been banned from touring the US back “over some Union hassle or Tax hassle” that ultimately hurt their fame stateside. (Chicagoist explains that Townshend is referring to a 1964 incident in which Davies clocked a musician’s union rep; our research shows that the fight actually happened in ’65.) Among other compliments, the Who guitarist praised The Kinks’ then-new album, Arthur (Or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire), writing, “I never thought they could ever best Village Green for sheer Kinksness but they appear to have done it.” Read the entire, adoring letter — typewritten on wonderfully kitschy Holiday Inn stationery — after the jump.