Those who became fans during The Monkees' resurgence in 1986 (like myself) will no doubt have fond memories of the Arista Records compilation Then & Now...The Best of The Monkees.
Released in June that year, the album contained the group's greatest hits, along with three new tracks recorded just in time for The Monkees' 20th Anniversary Reunion Tour: "That Was Then, This Is Now," "Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere," and "Kicks." Then & Now peaked at #21 and became a million seller, aided by the "That Was Then, This Is Now" single, which peaked at #20 while its accompanying music video received heavy airplay on MTV.
Arista, however, had originally planned to release a 2-LP set entitled The Best Of The Monkees to celebrate The Monkees' 20th Anniversary, but plans were changed when it was decided to record new tracks. With the double LP already pressed, it was instead made available via mail order and was distributed by Silver Eagle Records:
The Silver Eagle release featured 24 tracks but unlike the Then & Now issue, there was no gatefold cover and the liner notes were not included.
The Silver Eagle version of the album was also issued on cassette. A combination of both the Silver Eagle Best Of and Arista's Then & Now was released on compact disc in August 1986 and became the first Monkees CD to be made available in the United States.
This commercial aired in 1986 and 1987 advertising the 2-LP Silver Eagle set:
The Live Almanac first reported about Peter's involvement with the movie in December 2013.
Before the start of their extensive tour across North America, Micky, Davy, and Michael were guests on Glen Campbell's variety show on February 5, 1969. The trio performed "Last Train to Clarksville," "I'm a Believer," and "Salesman" live and lip-synced "Tear Drop City" (their brand new single at the time) after a series of comedy sketches. The clip of "Tear Drop City" appears below. Check out Micky, Mike, and Davy's gear, too!
L.A. Turnaround is the ninth album by Scottish folk musician Bert Jansch. Issued in 1974, it was produced by Michael Nesmith, who also contributed guitar work. First National Band alum Red Rhodes played pedal steel. The album is being reissued as a part of Record Store Day 2018, available in limited quantities on blue vinyl.
A short film was produced in conjunction with the LP which features intimate footage of Michael, Red, Bert, and company from this period. Thanks to David Cox for reminding the Live Almanac about this unique video now on YouTube!
Last night at the Alex Theatre in Glendale, California, Micky Dolenz participated in a benefit concert for the Autism Think Tank. The show was presented by the Wild Honey Foundation and spotlighted the music of Buffalo Springfield. Richie Furay, Buffalo Springfield co-founder, was also part of the event, and Monkees archivist and producer Andrew Sandoval played in the band.
On July 31, 1977, Peter Tork played a show at CBGB, the legendary Manhattan music club that featured rising stars of the punk and new wave genres in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Lester Bangs, who wrote for both Rolling Stone and Creem, delivered a wholly negative review of the show for the Village Voice:
Rolling Stone, of all publications, reported about Peter's appearance at CBGB in its September 22, 1977 issue:
Audio from the show has been bootlegged over the years:
New video footage of The Monkees live in New York City on their 2012 tour has surfaced on YouTube. The show took place at a sold out Beacon Theater on Broadway on December 2. It also just happened to be the final show of the tour, which featured the return of Michael Nesmith and moving tributes to Davy Jones, who had passed away on February 29, 2012.
Here's some great footage of Micky Dolenz and Davy Jones walking the streets of New York City in 1969 while in town for The Monkees' appearance on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. Micky and Davy seemingly encounter members of The Motions, a 1960s Dutch group they had seen perform live in concert the previous night at the Manhattan nightclub The Scene. Thanks a lot to David Cox for reminding me about this video on YouTube!
In the war scene from The Monkees' 1968 feature film Head, Peter Tork dodges heavy fire (and a photographer from Life) only to encounter another danger, football pro Ray Nitschke, who pummels Peter in the trenches.
If you are watching today, enjoy the Super Bowl!
Two songs tackled by Davy Jones during recording sessions for 1969's The Monkees Present went unheard for nearly 44 years until a super deluxe edition of the album arrived from Rhino Handmade in 2013. "Opening Night," written by Davy's friend Charlie Smalls (who had appeared as a guest on The Monkees television series in 1968 and who later went on to become the composer and lyricist of The Wiz), was recorded on May 1, 1969 at RCA Hollywood:
Andrew Sandoval detailed the session for "Opening Night" in his book The Monkees: The Day-by-Day Story of the '60s TV Pop Sensation. Note that Andrew talks about the possibility that members of Sam & The Goodtimers, The Monkees' 1969 touring band, took part in the recording of the song:
"How Can I Tell You," written by Davy and Bill Chadwick, was recorded at the same time as Chadwick's "French Song," a song that was ultimately included on The Monkees Present when it was released on October 11, 1969. The song features Frank Bugbee and Louie Shelton on acoustic guitar, Michael Rubini on piano, Max Bennett on bass, and Hal Blaine on drums. Here's more about the June 27, 1969 session for "How Can I Tell You" from Andrew Sandoval's book:
Here's two fan-made videos for both the slow and fast versions of "Me & Magdalena":
And, another fan-made video for "Birth of an Accidental Hipster":
The December 30, 1967 episode of the legendary American Bandstand (hosted by Dick Clark) looked back at the top songs of '67, including "I'm a Believer":
Last night in front of a sold out house (which included Micky Dolenz, Rodney Bingenheimer, Keith Allison, Henry Diltz, and others), Michael Nesmith took the stage at the legendary Troubadour in West Hollywood, a place where he performed in the pre-Monkees era and the site of the earliest live shows by the First National Band in 1970. Here is the evening's set list, courtesy of Andrew Sandoval:
Here's some footage from The Troubadour, courtesy of Sherri Hansen:
Thanks a lot to Sherri Hansen for sharing her videos from The Coach House:
Finally, here are Michael's mid-set acoustic renditions of "Propinquity," "Different Drum," and "Papa Gene's Blues."
Davy Jones and Micky Dolenz appeared on Tomorrow with Tom Snyder on September 1, 1977. This is a must watch interview!
Lady Bird is a comedy/drama film starring Saoirse Ronan, Laurie Metcalf, Tracy Letts, and Lucas Hedges. At the 75th Golden Globe Awards on January 7, Lady Bird won for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy and Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy (Ronan), and also received nominations for Best Supporting Actress (Metcalf) and Best Screenplay. The Monkees' "As We Go Along," originally issued on the soundtrack to the group's 1968 film, Head (and as the B-side to "Porpoise Song (Theme from Head"), was featured in the trailer for Lady Bird, but sadly was not included in the film itself. It does still appear, however, on its soundtrack, which is now available digitally and soon on compact disc.
Here is the official trailer for Lady Bird, featuring "As We Go Along":
Carole King referenced the song and its soundtrack appearance on Twitter:
Famed actress Rose Marie, best known for her starring role in The Dick Van Dyke Show, guested on two episodes of The Monkees during its first season: "Monkees in a Ghost Town" and "Monkee Mother." She passed away today at age 94.
Rose Marie in "Monkees in a Ghost Town"
Rose Marie in "Monkee Mother"
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