This past weekend, longtime fan Scott Erickson shared a very special item from his personal collection with The Monkees Live Almanac: a cassette tape of music sent to him by none other than Peter Tork.
Scott's story about the tape goes all the way back to the late 1980s when he had the opportunity to interview Peter for a radio show.
"When I was in my teens, I produced a radio show for a local AM station," Scott told the Live Almanac. "In 1989, I contacted Peter's 'people' to get an interview and he agreed. Peter later sent me a cassette containing 3 songs that I could use on the air. He had just finished mixing a live album recorded during his run at The Speakeasy in New York City in 1988. The live songs included on the tape were 'Sea Change,' 'Vagabond John,' and 'Miracle.' The live album was never released.
"Back then I was in the habit of always checking both sides of cassettes to make sure I didn't miss anything. And much to my surprise, there were 2 unused and unreleased backing tracks on the other side for 'Gettin In' and 'Sea Change'. I don't think Peter even knew they were there!"
Scott relayed that very few people have heard this unique tape, so the Live Almanac is honored to be able to share snippets from it in this very special audio sampler. Enjoy, and thanks again Scott!
Don't forget that Peter released official recordings of "Gettin' In" on The Monkees' 1987 album Pool It! as well as his 1994 solo album, Stranger Things Have Happened, which also included "Miracle" and "Sea Change."
At the time of his passing, Peter’s family requested that anyone wishing to make a contribution in his honor, to do so by supporting the scholarship fund at The Institute for The Musical Arts in Massachusetts, a nonprofit that provides young women with music education, music recording, & music community. More info on the IMA can be found here:
UK Daily Mail: 'He slipped away peacefully' - Monkees bassist Peter Tork dies at 77 after being diagnosed with rare tongue cancer 10 years ago
La Jolla Light: There's a local, San Diego-area angle to The Monkees history; band member Peter Tork dies at age 77
The Scotsman: Peter Tork, talented musician who helped manufactured band The Monkees transition into a genuine pop group
MedPage Today: Monkees' Peter Tork Dies of Rare Salivary Gland Cancer - But what is adenoid cystic carcinoma?
The Monkees Join METV Network Sunday Lineup Following Overwhelming Fan Response To Peter Tork Tribute
The latest episode of our Rolling Stone Music Now podcast celebrates the life and music of Peter Tork, with previously unheard interview audio and more. Andy Greene and Rob Sheffield join host Brian Hiatt to discuss Tork’s place in music history, while also tracing the Monkees’ broader story and making a case for their greatness.
Gemma "Coco" Dolenz (Vocals)
John Billings (Bass Guitar)
Rich Dart (Drums)
Christian Nesmith (Guitar)
Circe Link (Vocals)
Sandy Gennaro (Drums: 1987, 1996-1997, 2001-2002)
Fast forward to :41 of this 1987 appearance by The Monkees on The Sally Jessy Raphael Show to hear Peter quickly, and comically, recall his days at Carleton College:
Flashback: The Monkees’ Peter Tork Sings a Gleeful ‘Your Auntie Grizelda’ in 2015 by Angie Martoccio
Monkees archivist Andrew Sandoval is the author of The Monkees: The Day-by-Day Story of the '60s TV Pop Sensation and has produced The Monkees' concert tours since 2011. Andrew honored Peter Tork today on Facebook:
There are no words right now...heart broken over the loss of my Monkee brother, Peter Tork.
I am heartbroken.
The Monkees Live Almanac is very saddened by today's news that Peter Tork has passed away.
There are no other words at this time but to say thanks, Peter, for all of the great music and memories.