For years, Monkees fans have clamored for compilations highlighting the solo efforts of Micky, Davy, Michael, and Peter. Outside the readily available works of Michael Nesmith, and the reissue of Davy's albums from 1965 and 1971, little else can be found on the marketplace.
But now, Micky's early 1970s singles originally released on the MGM label are being collected for the first time ever. You can order Micky Dolenz: The MGM Singles Collection, a vinyl LP set, on Amazon UK and via Amazon in the United States. It's also available through online retailer Ernie B's, at a much better price. (A digital release is planned for a later date.)
A big thanks goes to both Iain Lee and Glenn Gretlund, co-producers of the MGM Singles Collection, for single-handedly making this project become a reality. To top off everything, the set features rare and previously unseen photographs from iconic rock and Monkees photographer, Henry Diltz.
Iain was kind enough to share with me the expertly crafted liner notes, written by Mark Kleiner Biggar, which are highly informative. And don't forget, Iain conducted an exclusive interview with Micky that appears in the gatefold.
In the meantime, check out this footage from Iain, who recently posted a video unveiling the package.
Patio Gardens, a venue housed inside the Farmington, Utah amusement resort Lagoon, was the original location for the filming of the "Circle Sky" live sequence for the movie Head. The venue was changed at the last minute to the Valley Music Hall in Salt Lake City for logistical reasons, despite fans already waiting in line at Patio Gardens. To make amends, The Monkees delivered a 30-minute set later that evening in front of a crowd of five thousand at Patio Gardens. This particular show was not filmed or recorded, and a setlist has yet to surface. These two concerts in Utah would constitute the last performances by all four Monkees in the United States until 1986.
Micky Dolenz and Davy Jones traveled to New York City in February 1970 to begin recording what became the last original Monkees album, Changes. "By that time it was pretty obvious that The Monkees were over," Micky was quoted in the liner notes of the 1990s compact disc release of the album. "Davy and I were still getting along, but we were mainly fulfilling a contractual obligation to the record company – that's what Changes is all about. I was quite happy to do it as long as somebody wanted to record me."
Years later, Davy expressed frustration with the sessions, producer Jeff Barry (who was also responsible for "I'm a Believer"), and generally refused to comment on what he called his least favorite Monkees album. The first and only single released from it, "Oh My My," limped to #98 on Billboard, and when the album was issued in June, it became the first Monkees LP to miss the charts completely. With the cover showing just two members of the group remaining, Peter Tork years later recalled an anecdote from that time period. "I read this joke in the trades someplace...They thought that either Micky or Davy was going to quit, and the other was going to go on as The Monkee."
Two tracks recorded during the sessions for Changes remain long lost outtakes. No tapes or session credits have survived for "Ride Baby Ride." "Which Way Do You Want It?," a song that was replaced on the album by Micky's "Midnight Train," is also a mystery.
Check out the entire '69 tour program on the 1969 tour page!
Davy catches some pool time with members of The Sundowners (who opened the live concerts during the 1967 summer tour), along with Ric Klein, David Pearl, David Price, and others while on the road in the summer of '67.
Thanks to Galen Johnson who found this vintage article originally published in the Independent Star-News in Pasadena, California on November 6, 1966.
The Monkees are featured in the brand new issue of Uncut (with David Byrne on the cover). Uncut tweeted this tidbit earlier this morning:
UPDATE: Uncut followed up their tweet with an article on their website:
You can download the current issue of Uncut at various platforms.