"Who could have expected a comeback this great? Mike Nesmith gets to show off all the mileage on his country-fried pipes in this superb road-weary ballad, written to order by a lifelong Monkees fan, Death Cab for Cutie's Ben Gibbard." -Rob Sheffield
Released in late 2014, the 3-CD Rhino Handmade release is currently not available for ordering at the official online Monkees store. Customers are instead prompted to subscribe to an email list to be notified when it's back in stock. In late April 2015, Rhino alerted fans that less than 500 copies of the limited edition run of 4,000 remained.
Previously, Handmade sets for The Birds, The Bees & The Monkees and the Head soundtrack have sold out, along with The Headquarters Sessions and Summer 1967: The Complete US Concert Recordings. Still available, however, are boxes for both Instant Replay and The Monkees Present.
Here's "Oh My My," "The Girl I Knew Somewhere," and "Good Clean Fun," courtesy of The Monkees Tour Facebook page:
Lisa Manekofsky attended the penultimate show on the 50th Anniversary Tour at Twin Rivers Casino in Lincoln, Rhode Island on November 19th. In a recent email to the Live Almanac, Lisa reported two new items on the merchandise table which were not for sale on earlier dates, or at least since the last time she had seen the tour (in mid-July in New Hampshire). There was a canvas tote bag which sold for $20, and a light blue T-shirt with a drawing of Micky Dolenz and the words "Psycho Jello," which sold for $35.
Did anyone else take notice of these additional items at other late stops on the tour? (Note: The "Psycho Jello" shirt was for sale on Micky's official eBay store this past summer.)
Thanks, Lisa, for the heads-up!
Last night, The Monkees opened the final leg of the 50th Anniversary Tour with their first ever show in New Zealand. Here is the evening's set list, which included the debut of both "Oh My My" and "Good Clean Fun" in the set. "Good Clean Fun" was a hit in Australia, reaching #13 in 1969. The last original Monkees single, "Oh My My," while peaking at #98 in the United States, made it to #34 in Australia in 1970. A big thanks to Andrew Sandoval for sharing the set list with the Live Almanac!
Be sure to join Al Bigley and Alan Williams for the latest edition of their new Monkees podcast, and visit their website in the event you missed the first two episodes!
A lot of fans from Australia and New Zealand have contacted the Live Almanac asking about pricing and availability of 50th Anniversary Tour merchandise for the shows Down Under. I'd like to thank Matt Boe of Love Police Merchandising for confirming which items will be for sale and at what cost:
Tommy Boyce & Bobby Hart's "Gonna Buy Me a Dog" played a key role in the episode, and this article highlights an attempt Michael Nesmith made at the song when he produced a backing track for it on July 7, 1966 at RCA Hollywood. That session featured multiple guitarists including Peter Tork, along with Wrecking Crew aces Glen Campbell, James Burton, Al Casey, and Jim Helms. The bassist was Bill Pitman, while Hal Blaine played drums and Billy Preston handled organ duties.
Nesmith's backing track never received a vocal and went unheard until 2006 when it was released on a deluxe edition of The Monkees' debut album. Boyce & Hart later cut their own (drastically different) version, and it was this take that was ultimately included on The Monkees.
Starting this week The Monkees will begin the final leg of their 50th Anniversary Tour in New Zealand and Australia. Here are the dates and venues for this last run of shows:
The Monkees Tour Facebook page posted the following information about the poll:
The voting starts today for "The 2016 Coolest Song of the Year 10th Annual Listener's Poll" from syndicated radio show (Sirius XM channel 21) “Little Steven's Underground Garage.” The Monkees' "Birth of an Accidental Hipster" is one of the nominees as it was chosen to be The Coolest Song in the World for the week of May 22, 2016 - show #738.
Fans may vote for their favorite "Coolest Song" once every 24 hours. The voting ends on December 24th at 12pm EST.
The “Coolest Song of 2016” winner will be announced on January 2nd, during Kid Leo's "Coolest Songs of 2016 Revisited Annual Year End Review" show on Sirius XM-21 where Kid Leo will play all 50 "Coolest Songs" of 2016.
Good Times! Plus! is available today as part of a special Record Store Day release by Rhino Records for Black Friday. The four song EP, pressed on 10" red opaque vinyl and limited to 2,500 copies, includes the four non-album songs that were previously only available via iTunes and exclusive retail CDs in both the US and Japan. Be sure to check out Record Store Day's official website for participating stores.
Thanks much to Chris Coyle, who picked up his copy earlier this morning, for sharing these photos with the Live Almanac!
A live recording of a Dolenz, Jones, Boyce & Hart show, Concert in Japan (recorded on July 20, 1976 at Yubin Chokin Hall in Tokyo, Japan), was released as a vinyl LP set in Japan in 1981. At the time, the live album was never given a formal release in the United States or elsewhere. A big thanks to Ben Belmares for sharing his photos of the original Japanese LP:
Concert in Japan was finally issued on compact disc in the United States in 1996 during The Monkees' 30th Anniversary, featuring liner notes by Monkees archivist and producer Andrew Sandoval. Once again, Ben Belmares was kind enough to save me the time of scanning my copy of the CD and provided everything below:
Interview with Wayne Avers