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The Monkees

The Monkees are an American pop/rock band that released music in their original incarnation between 1966 and 1970, with subsequent reunion albums and tours in the decades that followed. Formed in Los Angeles in 1965 by Robert "Bob" Rafelson and Bert Schneider for the American television series The Monkees, which aired from 1966 to 1968, the musical acting quartet was composed of Americans Micky Dolenz, Michael Nesmith, and Peter Tork, and Englishman Davy Jones. The band's music was initially supervised by producer Don Kirshner.

Described by Dolenz as initially being "a TV show about an imaginary band [...] that wanted to be the Beatles, [but] that was never successful", the actor-musicians soon became a real band. As Dolenz would later describe it, "The Monkees really becoming a band was like the equivalent of Leonard Nimoy [who played the alien officer Spock in Star Trek] really becoming a Vulcan."

For the first few months of their almost five-year initial career, the four actor-musicians were allowed only limited roles in the recording studio. This was due in part to the excessive time spent filming the television series, which in turn limited the amount of time available to the group to rehearse and coalesce as a band. Nonetheless, Nesmith did compose and produce some songs from the beginning, and Peter Tork contributed limited guitar work on the Nesmith-produced sessions. They soon fought for and earned the right to collectively supervise all musical output under the band's name. Although the sitcom was canceled in 1968, the band continued to record music through 1971.

In 1986, the television show experienced a revival, which led to a series of reunion tours and new records. Up until 2011, the group had reunited and toured several times, to varying degrees of success. Despite the sudden death of Davy Jones on 29 February 2012, the surviving members reunited for a tour in November–December 2012 and again in 2013 for a 24-date tour.

The Monkees have sold more than 75 million records worldwide and had international hits, including "Last Train to Clarksville", "Pleasant Valley Sunday", and "Daydream Believer". At their peak in 1967, the band outsold the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, combined

The group was created for a NBC television show. Over 400 men auditioned for the roles.
58 Episodes of the TV show were made. It lasted 2 seasons and aired from 1966-1968.
The idea for the fictional group came from the 1965 Beatles' movie A Hard Day's Night.
Steven Stills and John Sebastian both auditioned and were turned down for roles on the show. It was rumored that Charles Manson tried out, but this was not true.
Dolenz almost got the part of The Fonz on Happy Days. He was beaten out by Henry Winkler.
At first, the group did not play their own instruments.
The TV show became a hit in England when it aired on the BBC.
After their TV show was canceled, they made the movie Head, which at the time was a box office flop, but is now a cult classic. A then-unknown Jack Nicholson helped write and produce the movie. He also acted in it along with Frank Zappa, Terri Garr, Annette Funicello, Sonny Liston, and Dennis Hopper.
Davy Jones appeared in an episode of The Brady Bunch where he sang to Marsha.
Nesmith's mother invented Liquid Paper. She got the idea when she was a secretary, making small bottles of water-based paint that she called "Mistake Out" and gave to other typists. She sold her company to Gillette in 1979 for $47 million.
Tim Buckley and Frank Zappa both appeared on their TV show. Zappa was a big fan, and even asked Dolenz to play in his group after their show was canceled.
As a child, Micky Dolenz starred in the TV series Circus Boy. It was a Walt Disney production
Headquarters was the only Monkees album recorded with all four in the studio at the same time. On all the other albums each member recorded their part separately and then the whole was mixed by the engineers.
Peter Tork was the most accomplished musician of the Monkees. He plays 12 different instruments: his choice "depends on what kind of music I'm playing."
Tork taught Algebra and coached baseball at a private school in the late 1970s. He also worked as a singing waiter.
Tork declined an invitation to rejoin the Monkees for McDonald's TV commercial, as he is a vegetarian.
Nesmith is the most accomplished musician in the group - he wrote "Different Drum," recorded by The Stone Ponies (Linda Ronstadt), "Propinquity" and "Some Of Shelley's Blues" recorded by The Nitty Gritty Dirt band. The Monkees may have been designed as a "Prefab Four," but Nesmith is a stand alone artist.
Tork worked as a singing waiter at the Sleeping Lady Cafe in Fairfax California in the mid '70s.
Nesmith and Jones were both born on a December 30: Nesmith in 1942 and Jones in 1945.


50s, 60s Hits

I'm A Believer
Last Train To Clarksville
Your Stepping Stone

Members of this Group







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