Today marks the 50th Anniversary of the recording of "Your Auntie Grizelda, " Peter Tork's lone showcase on The Monkees' second album, More of The Monkees. The song was recorded at American Recording Company on Ventura Boulevard in Studio City, California on October 14, 1966, and Andrew Sandoval wrote about the session (which also included work on "Hold on Girl") in his book, The Monkees: The Day-by-Day Story of the '60s TV Pop Sensation:
The Cactus Channel Feat. Laneous – "Can You Dig It"
The Monkees’ 1968 hit "Can You Dig It" was a sprawling affair. Multiple layers of instrumentals which took the listener on a trip around the world. Surely it was no easy task for North Carlton crew The Cactus Channel to take on, but the small crowd of musicians make it look effortless.
The already big jam was made even bigger with the 11-piece’s rendition. Historically, the band are an instrumental act, recruiting singers for special occasions. Previously, they’ve tagged the artist formally known as Chet Faker and they’re currently working on a release with Ball Park Music’s Sam Cromack. This time, they’ve teamed up with Brisbane native Laneous.
The band got special assistance from the team at Hopestreet Recordings, to make the below feat possible.
“‘The Monkees’ was about, ‘We’ll get along, and be happy.’ And we represent that, even on stage. As entertainers, that’s our job. And it’s a very good job, if you ask me.”
“Michael joins us when he wants to and has reasons for it and all of that is all right. That’s just Michael being Michael – we don’t fault him for it or go into ecstasy over it. We work together when we work together. We’re all on each other’s sides.”
Michael Nesmith to substitute for Peter Tork on upcoming Monkees dates in Arizona due to family emergency
Earlier this evening, this message appeared on Peter's official Facebook page:
Michael Nesmith isn’t on the road with you --
"He will spend a significant time with us in Los Angeles on Sept. 16."
A week before The Monkees was set to debut on NBC on September 12, 1966, the group undertook a promotional tour that made stops in Chicago, Boston, New York, and Los Angeles. The promotional tour was launched in Hollywood on September 1 with a private reception at Screen Gems. For the first time, The Monkees played briefly in front of an audience. Here's a few pictures of Peter from that event. (Note: I'm uncertain if the picture of Peter "tied up" is from the Screen Gems event, despite the shirt being the same as the one he wore that day. Can anyone confirm?)
This article, from the December 1967 issue of Fave, digs deep into Peter's pre-Monkees days washing dishes at the Golden Bear, a folk club in Huntington Beach, California.
Monkee Spectacular was published from April 1967 through August 1968 for a total of sixteen issues. Each magazine was completely devoted to The Monkees, and featured color photos, exclusive stories, fan letters, contests, and more.