100 Great Songs From The British Invasion: ‘See My Friends’- The Kinks. ‘ See My Friends’ was a non-album single released by The Kinks in the UK in the summer of 1965. It would be their sixth Top 40 hit in the United Kingdom. ‘See My Friends’ was written by The Kinks Ray Davies. What makes ‘ See My Friends’ rather unique is it was one of the first songs in rock music to integrate Indian raga sounds. In this case the sounds is made with a drone effect on the guitar which makes it sound like an Indian tambura. The Kinks were just ahead of The Beatles ‘Norwegian Wood’ which made use of the sitar- but right behind The Yardbirds ‘Heart Full Of Soul’ in which Jeff Beck’s electric guitar sounds like a sitar.
The inspiration for ‘See My Friends’ came on The Kinks plane trip to Australia when they had a stopover in Bombay. Davies one morning heard fisherman chanting as they took out their nets. When The Kinks arrived in Australia- Davies started work on several songs- one of them became ‘See My Friends.’ Davies at one point said that see my friends was about homosexuality. He has also said that the song was about an older sister who died while on the dance floor- due to an undiagnosed hole in her heart. She had given Davies his first guitar when he was thirteen. Whatever its about- its a great sounding song.
Single: ‘See My Friends’- The Kinks/ Written by Ray Davies/ Record Company-Reprise/ Time: 2:44/ Produced by Shel Talmy/ Recorded on May 3, 1965/ Released on June 30, 1965/ Peaked at #10 in UK Singles Chart. Not released as a single in the US.