Practical Paula, that’s me. I take the rational approach to informing and persuading my readers. But when I hear a song like this by The Kinks, I sigh and admire their charm and audacity. Oh, and laugh.

Link: www.sheetmusicdirect.com/se/ID_No/42001/Product.aspx
Link: http://www.sheetmusicdirect.com

The Village Green Preservation Society

Written by Ray Davies and recorded in August 1968 at Pye Studios (No. 2), London.

We are the Village Green Preservation Society
God save Donald Duck, Vaudeville and Variety
We are the Desperate Dan Appreciation Society
God save strawberry jam and all the different varieties
Preserving the old ways from being abused
Protecting the new ways for me and for you
What more can we do
We are the Draught Beer Preservation Society
God save Mrs. Mopp and good Old Mother Riley
We are the Custard Pie Appreciation Consortium
God save the George Cross and all those who were awarded them
We are the Sherlock Holmes English Speaking Vernacular
Help save Fu Manchu, Moriarty and Dracula
We are the Office Block Persecution Affinity
God save little shops, china cups and virginity
We are the Skyscraper Condemnation Affiliate
God save tudor houses, antique tables and billiards
Preserving the old ways from being abused
Protecting the new ways for me and for you
What more can we do
God save the Village Green.

To appreciate how tricky these words are to sing and hear the catchy ba-ba-ba flourishes, you’ve got to listen to the song. Here’s a YouTube version.

Link: The Kinks are the Village Green Preservation Society on Wikipedia.
Link: The Kinks are the Village Green Preservation Society on Wikipedia.

In case you’re wondering, I’m not nostalgic for the tune. I’d never heard it until a few months ago. My daughter is introducing me to great music from the ’60s and ’70s through the wonders of library holdings and iTunes. Most of this stuff probably didn’t make it to radio in my patch of the Midwest and my older siblings had firm control of the stereo.

But I digress. What I hear is that one person’s greatest pleasures and values can easily be a joke to someone else. In making this point, Davies manages to be both sweet and cynical. The song seems like a real departure from more famous music of the “British Invasion,” from the wild energy of The Who or the danceability of the early Beatles. The Village Green Preservation Society may not have been a hit, but I think it’s still cool.