Reflective Ray Davies

(Gibson) It's been a bittersweet year for former Kinks frontman Ray Davies. He played a stirring set to the masses at the Glastonbury Festival in June and released an album of collaborations with artists, including Bruce Springsteen, Metallica and Jackson Browne, in November called See My Friends. Along the way there was heartache, as well, with the passing of original Kinks bassist Pete Quaife in June. Davies also received a series of stinging public rebukes from his brother Dave, when the inevitable topic of a Kinks reunion followed Quaife's death. Still Brother Ray keeps his head held high, and the London native was gracious enough to sit down this week with The Independent to answer questions both insightful and insouciant. Here are a few of the highlights:

"My parents were working class, but very supportive of our family of eight children. They moved from the city to the suburbs after the Second World War to give us a fresh start. They were both from Islington, and the street they lived in had been bombed during the war."

"You wouldn't know it but I'm very good at listening to people's problems, and cooking. I'm a vegetarian, although I eat fish occasionally. I have a couple of vegetarian dishes I've patented. I love to surprise non-veggies they say: 'That was incredible,' and then they're totally shocked to hear that there's no meat in it." - more on this story

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