7a Records, the label that specializes in Monkees solo-related projects and more, recently announced that a couple of their titles are now available to stream and download on over 70 different platforms. And on top of that, vinyl lovers rejoice! Peter Tork's 1994 solo album, Stranger Things Have Happened, is coming soon on limited edition green vinyl.
Here's a rundown of 7a's latest activities:
In late 1980 Peter Tork formed a band called The New Monks, and shortly thereafter the group recorded a single, "(I'm Not Your) Stepping Stone"/"Higher and Higher." Last year, both songs were featured as bonus tracks on 7a's CD and vinyl editions of Peter's Stranger Things Have Happened album.
And now, for the first time, the single is officially available to stream or download:
Back in 2019, 7a revived Davy Jones' long out-of-print early 1980s live albums that were recorded and issued in Japan. Stream or download Davy Jones Live in Japan now:
Don't forget that this collection can still be purchased on compact disc and as a triple vinyl LP, and both of these versions contain exclusive bonus tracks.
In 1994, James Lee Stanley's Beachwood Records released Peter Tork's first ever solo album, Stranger Things Have Happened, featuring several notable guest musicians and friends including Stanley, Micky Dolenz, Michael Nesmith, Laurence Juber (Paul McCartney & Wings), Mackenzie Phillips, and Timothy B. Schmit (The Eagles). Last year, 7a celebrated Stranger Things with an expansive compact disc reissue while also pressing a limited edition splatter vinyl.
Fans can now pre-order 7a's latest incarnation of the album, this time on transparent green vinyl, which is set for release on September 10:
The official Monkees Facebook page has recently relayed information about the upcoming Monkees Farewell Tour featuring Micky Dolenz and Michael Nesmith, slated to begin in Spokane, Washington on September 10.
It was announced yesterday that Micky and Michael's October 3 appearance in Nashville has been canceled. Monkees manager Andrew Sandoval confirmed on Facebook that the venue, the Tennessee Performing Arts Center, was responsible for the cancellation. Refunds are available at point of purchase.
Furthermore, the duo's shows in The Woodlands, Texas on September 28 and 29 have been postponed due to safety concerns surrounding Covid-19. It has been suggested that if you have tickets for these particular shows to contact the venue about refunds.
Stay tuned to The Monkees Live Almanac for future updates, and please be sure to follow the site on Twitter and Facebook!
In a recent email to subscribers, Andrew Sandoval, author of The Monkees: The Day-By-Day Story, provided a detailed update on the shipping status of his new book, which is now expected to arrive in early September. As an added bonus, Andrew takes us back to the fall of 1966 with a compelling account of the initial recording session for The Monkees' signature hit single, "I'm a Believer."
Andrew's message appears below, and there's still time to pre-order a copy of Day-By-Day!
Greetings Beatland Readers!
As July 1966 ended, only Don Kirshner was sure of the Monkees’ success. When his trusted record makers – Snuff Garrett, Mickie Most, Carole King & Gerry Goffin – fell away, he remarkably switched gears to pull together an exceptional album – The Monkees – in just four weeks. And should the resulting release have any kind of success, he also had twelve songs (“All The King’s Horses”; “The Kind Of Girl I Could Love”; “I Don’t Think You Know Me”; “So Goes Love”; “I Won’t Be The Same Without Her”; “You Just May Be The One”; “I Can’t Get Her Off Of My Mind”; “Mary, Mary”; “Of You”; “(I Prithee) Do Not Ask For Love”; “(I’m Not Your) Steppin’ Stone”; “Whatever’s Right”) already in progress to comprise a second album.
“Everybody seemed enthusiastic, except Mike Nesmith. [He had] a big attitude right from the beginning and he said at one point, ‘I’m a producer too, and that ain’t no hit.’ So, it was like, ‘Oooo.’ To break the tension I made what I thought was an obvious joke. I said, ‘Well, Mike, it’s not finished. You’ve got to picture this with the strings and the horns.’ Which I thought there wasn’t going to be strings and horns [on it, but he would understand that] and he goes, ‘Well, maybe it could be something with strings and horns.’ Then he realized everybody laughed and the relationship goes down from there.”
It is unknown if allowing Nesmith to sing at all was a bit of psychological theater staged by Kirshner and Barry to get what they ultimately wanted (Micky on lead vocals). Either way, Donnie would later learn he was playing with fire if his intention was indeed to play Nesmith. “We got in the studio,” recalled Davy in May 1967, “and Mike didn’t sing it the way Donnie wanted him to sing it and Donnie asked Mike to sing it a certain way and Mike didn’t sing it that way. And during a break Mike just split; he just left…He wasn’t taken off lead. He chose to be taken off himself by leaving.”
The latest episode of The Monkees Pad Show features an exclusive interview with Barbara Hamaker, who worked in The Monkees' front office and also traveled with the group during their legendary 1967 summer tour. Known back then as "Barbara Monkee," she talks to host Joe Russo about her experiences with The Monkees during the height of Monkeemania, her interactions with luminaries like Jimi Hendrix, Bob Rafelson, and Bert Schneider, watching The Monkees jam with Frank Zappa, and much more. Enjoy this fantastic conversation via the link below, and be sure to follow The Monkees Pad Show on Facebook and Twitter!
In 1977 Michael Nesmith enjoyed a moderate worldwide hit with "Rio," the lead-off track from his eighth post-Monkees album, From a Radio Engine to the Photon Wing. During this period, Nez produced a promotional video for the song with director William Dear. That experience helped spur Michael's creation of the first music video television program, PopClips, which originally aired on the Nickelodeon cable network. In 1980, PopClips was sold to Warner/Amex Satellite Entertainment Company, who ultimately developed PopClips into MTV.
After leaving The Monkees in 1970, Michael's interest in production later resulted in the formation of his own corporation in 1974, Pacific Arts, to manage and develop various media projects. In the post-PopClips era, Nez released Elephant Parts on VHS and Betamax, a collection of comedy skits and music videos that won the first-ever Grammy Award for Music Video in 1981. Later in 1985, Television Parts, a comedy-variety series featuring Jerry Seinfeld, Jay Leno, Whoopi Goldberg, Gary Shandling, and many others debuted on NBC. Both productions were hosted and produced by Nesmith. Pacific Arts continued to flourish and by the late 1980s had become a leader in the burgeoning home video market.
As MTV celebrates its 40th anniversary this week, take a look back at the history of the channel and Michael's influence:
Fans of The Monkees' album Pool It! are sure to enjoy this lively and revealing discussion about the group's 1987 LP, led by Mark Kleiner (host of the Nesmith, Tork, Goffin & King podcast who has also penned superlative liner notes for various 7a Records releases) and his longtime friend and former Monkees pen pal, Lee Baber. Watch and listen as Mark and Lee welcome guests like producer Roger Bechirian (who expresses his desire to undertake a remix of the album), session guitarist Mark Christian, songwriters Michael Levine ("Since You Went Away") and Tom Teeley ("Don't Bring Me Down"), Monkees collector Ed Reilly, and graphic designer Delana Bettoli.
Thanks also goes to Mark Kleiner for sharing this photo of The Monkees taken by Rick Barham during filming of the music video for "Heart and Soul," the lead single from Pool It! Rick acted as the gaffer during the video's production.
Annabel Jones, Talia Jones Rosten, and Sarah Jones McFadden are featured in the latest issue of Sidelines Magazine. The ladies share stories about their dad and his love of horses, discuss the establishment of the Davy Jones Equine Memorial Foundation, and more in this interview with Kimberly Gatto:
Monkees author, historian, and producer Andrew Sandoval recently appeared on the latest episode of the podcast Ranking The Beatles, where he talks about the relationship between The Beatles and The Monkees, creating reissue packages from a fan's perspective, his new book, how his parents sneaked him into a Wings concert in 1976, interesting Monkees tidbits, what Andrew considers to be The Monkees' holy grail, and much more.
Listen now by clicking the link below, or stream it on Spotify!
Late last year, fans pushed The Monkees over the top when the vinyl-only label Run Out Groove placed the group's 1966 eponymous debut album in the running to be pressed as an expanded deluxe edition double LP featuring previously unreleased songs and mixes. After some lengthy production delays, customers have started to receive their orders over the last couple of weeks.
Fast forward now to another vote, a different album, but the exact same results!
Earlier this summer, Run Out Groove conducted another contest to decide their next release, and this time The Monkees' sophomore album, More Of The Monkees, claimed victory and is now set to receive the same deluxe style treatment as The Monkees.
Pre-orders are now open until August 17, 2021 for two different versions of the album, which include a standard black vinyl pressing as well as a limited edition transparent green vinyl edition. More details can be found below, along with links to pre-order. (UPDATE 7/28/2021: According to Monkees.com, the release date for the green vinyl edition is set for April 15, 2022.)
Will Headquarters be next?
As part of yesterday's Record Store Day offerings, the Missing Links trilogy (originally produced by Andrew Sandoval and Bill Inglot for Rhino Records in the late '80s/'90s) was made available as an exclusive, limited edition release courtesy of Friday Music. The LPs were pressed on 180 gram audiophile vinyl in multiple color variations, limited to 2,000 copies for each volume.
Volume 1 contains the CD bonus tracks that were not part of the original vinyl and Volume 2 features the CD bonus tracks not found on the original cassette. This in-store only release also marks the premiere appearance of the second and third Missing Links installments on vinyl.
Thanks a lot to longtime Live Almanac contributor Ben Belmares for providing scans of the albums he acquired.
Missing Links Volume Two
Missing Links Volume Three
This past February, Monkees fans received the news they had long been anticipating when Monkees historian, producer, and manager Andrew Sandoval officially announced the brand new edition of his groundbreaking book on the group, The Monkees: The Day-By-Day Story. Set to ship in August, Andrew's original work has been rewritten, redesigned, and expanded to an incredible 740 pages! You still have time to order a copy of this limited edition tome via Beatland Books.
The Live Almanac is now happy to share an exclusive interview with Andrew, recorded in late May, where he talks with Paris Stachtiaris. Monkees fans are likely to recall Paris as the co-host of Headquarters ("The only radio show in America dedicated to The Monkees") that originally aired from 1987 to 1990 on WBAU-FM, the former radio station of Adelphi University in Long Island, New York. In 2019 Paris returned to broadcasting, with co-host Ben Brown on the HCS Radio Network.
Throughout this two-part interview, Andrew talks to Paris about the various stages of his career in music, including being a Grammy-nominated record producer and the host of the long-running Come to the Sunshine show. Andrew also discusses his role in The Monkees returning to the concert stage in 2011, the circumstances surrounding the abrupt end to that tour, how close all four Monkees came to reuniting in 2012 before Davy Jones passed away, the Good Times! era, future Beatland Books projects, missing links in The Monkees' tape vault, and much more!
Dave Evans was a screenwriter on The Monkees television series. He is responsible for the episodes "Your Friendly Neighborhood Kidnappers," "Don't Look a Gift Horse in the Mouth," "Too Many Girls," "I Was a Teenage Monster," "Find The Monkees," "Alias Micky Dolenz," "The Christmas Show," and "Monkees Race Again." He also co-wrote "The Frodis Caper" with Micky Dolenz.
Watch episode 3 of The Monkees Pad Show, as Dave speaks with host JR about his personal friendships with each of the Monkees, writing episodes like "The Frodis Caper," his interactions with Charles Manson, working with Bob Rafelson & Bert Schneider, and much, much more!
The deadline is fast approaching to officially pre-order your copy of Andrew Sandoval's 740 page opus, The Monkees: The Day-By-Day Story. And don't forget: the various editions of Day-By-Day will be produced in limited combined quantities. There is no plan to keep this book in print perpetually and an electronic version will not be offered. Pre-order now via Beatland Books!!
In the meantime, check out the latest news update from Andrew about Day-By-Day and much more, and then be sure to view the official unboxing video for the three distinct versions of the book, which also happens to feature a very interesting soundtrack!
Andrew has also previously provided two other updates about Day-By-Day, accompanied by exclusive photographs, through the Beatland Books email list. These are must reads! (UPDATED 9/21/2021 to include latest information)
Last October, fans pushed The Monkees over the top when the vinyl-only label Run Out Groove placed the group's 1966 debut album in the running to be pressed as an expanded deluxe edition double LP featuring previously unreleased songs and mixes. Though that release (in both yellow and black vinyl) has been delayed until July 9, Monkees enthusiasts now have the opportunity to vote once again, this time for the group's #1 multi-platinum sophomore album, More of the Monkees, to also be issued as an expanded 2-LP set.
Run Out Groove has provided more details about this proposed release, including a track listing:
The Monkees have some competition for Run Out Groove's next project, so be sure to cast your vote by July 18:
UPDATE 7/19/2021: More of the Monkees has won the vote and is now available to pre-order!
Peter Mills is the author of the exceptional 2016 book, The Monkees, Head, and the '60s, and a friend of the Live Almanac. A while back, Peter relayed that he had to leave an abundance of material for his book on the cutting room floor, including an examination of Michael Nesmith's work with Ian Matthews in the early 1970s.
And now, Peter is sharing more of his shelved research, this time focusing on one of The Monkees' most iconic songs, "Goin' Down." Enjoy Peter's essay, linked below:
With the recent release of Dolenz sings Nesmith and the announcement of a Monkees Farewell tour in May, Zilch host extraordinaire Ken Mills welcomes back Andrew Sandoval as he talks about the tour and Micky's new solo album, as well as his upcoming book, The Monkees: The Day-By-Day Story, and much, much more.
"We have a lot to celebrate right now," Andrew said.
Monkees Farewell Tour
Dolenz sings Nesmith