|Single by The Kinks|
|B-side||"This is Where I Belong" (Europe)
"Harry Rag" (US)
|Released||21 April 1967 (Europe)
24 May 1967 (US)
Pye Studios (No. 2), London
|Label||Pye 7N 17314 (Europe)
Reprise 0587 (US)
|The Kinks singles chronology|
"Mister Pleasant" (usually spelled as Mr. Pleasant) is a song recorded by British rock group The Kinks in 1967, written by Ray Davies. It was released as a single in the US and mainland Europe but not in the UK. It was released in the UK six months later as the B-side to "Autumn Almanac". The song is now available as a bonus track to their album Face to Face, and an alternate version was also released as a bonus track on the 2011 deluxe reissue of Something Else by the Kinks.
"Mister Pleasant" is lyrically somewhat similar to the earlier track "A Well Respected Man", as it satirizes the heedless complacency of a nouveau riche who, for all his newfound worldly success, is but a foolish cuckold. Musically, the song has strong English Music Hall influences and a "trad jazz" backing that features a trombone and ragtime-style piano (played by Nicky Hopkins).
Due to the Kinks' absence from American touring and the single's noncommercial sound, "Mister Pleasant" did not fare well in the US, only managing a peak of number 80—their poorest showing since "See My Friends" failed to reach the Hot 100 in 1965—despite being tapped as likely Top 20 material by Billboard magazine. The publication characterized it as a "clever novelty" piece, which "should skyrocket the group back up to the top of Hot 100 once again." "Mr. Pleasant" was much more successful in Europe, particularly the Netherlands (where it reached number 2) and Belgium (number 3).
While US B-side "Harry Rag" was included on the upcoming Something Else by The Kinks album (released in September), European B-side "This is Where I Belong" remained unavailable in the UK or US. The track had been recorded with the sessions for Face to Face but not included (although it is currently available on the CD reissue, along with "Mister Pleasant"). It was made available in the US on The Kink Kronikles in 1972 but was only released in the UK in 1984.
As 4-track EPs were much more common in France than 2-track singles, most Kinks singles were issued as EPs there, usually adding two album tracks. The EP for "Mister Pleasant" however contained all exclusive tracks. As well as both sides of the European single (see above), the EP contained "Two Sisters" from the as yet unreleased Something Else... and "Village Green" which was only available in the UK 18 months later on the album The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society.
All tracks written by Ray Davies
- "Mister Pleasant"
- "This is Where I Belong"
The EP was made available on CD in 2000 as part of the EP Collection vol 2 boxed set.
- Mister Pleasant at kinks.it.rit.edu, retrieved February 17, 2009.
- Mister Pleasant (US) at kinks.it.rit.edu, retrieved February 17, 2009.
- Billboard Magazine, June 10, 1967. p. 16
- Mister Pleasant EP at kinks.it.rit.edu, retrieved February 17, 2009.