‘You Really Got Me’ and the Slashed Speaker

April 14, 2011 | By | 2 Replies More
Nice hat on Dave Davies....

Nice hat on Dave Davies....

You may have heard the story about how Dave Davies slashed, or allegedly slashed, the speaker cone of his amp to get a buzzier, raspier tone in the Kinks tune “You Really Got Me.”

Well, he did – but I challenge you to actually hear it. First, here’s the story (from here, an interview with Kinks manger/producer Shel Talmy):

> Dave Davies played lead on a Harmony Meteor guitar that was hooked up to an Elpico amp and slaved to a Vox AC30. Furthermore, its distortion was largely the result of him having already used a razor blade to slice the speaker cone of the Elpico — affectionately referred to as his “fart box” — and puncturing it with knitting needles so that the fabric contributed to the sound as it vibrated.

> “It was there the first time they played that song in the studio and it was Dave’s invention,” confirms Talmy, regarding the instantly identifiable riff that, according to Ray Davies, evolved while working out the chords to ‘Louie Louie.’

> “The shi**y little amplifier made it raunchier – people used to kick it to make it sound even shi**ier, and I enhanced it by using a couple of mics and pushing it on the board,” Talmy said.

Don’t know the last time you happened to hear this, but while the temp and riff rock, the tone…sounds like the world’s crappiest guitar amp, which by today’s standards it probably was. Btw, the solo starts at 1:16.

The original version (1964)

’79 (I believe) live version


> If you’ve heard the rumor that Jimmy Page was hired to play guitar on a Kinks record and played rhythm or lead on “You Really Got Me,” in the article linked to above, Page says: “I didn’t play on ‘You Really Got Me’….” So there you go.

> Yep, gotta put these versions in:


Demo, different fills and solo

Live, Largo, MD show, ’82

Category: Jimmy Page/Zep, Kinks, Van Halen, Vox

Comments (2)

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  1. Gee Halen says:

    The Metallica feat. Ray davies version is worth rigth up there, too:

  2. rockman627 says:

    I’ve heard slashed speakers go back earlier. Link Wray? Paul Burlison?

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