Author Topic: The Monkees - official discussion  (Read 138 times)

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Offline Cool Chris

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The Monkees - official discussion
« on: February 11, 2019, 10:29:05 PM »
So yeah, why no discussion of The Monkees here? Ok, I get it. They aren’t a “real” band. They are a “manufactured” one, a TV fad, the Marx Brothers version of Beatles, they didn’t write their own music, they didn’t play their own instruments… But their first four albums were stellar. Their 5th is still good, and has their best, and most identifiable, hit. I recognize that I still listen to their music with the nostalgic glasses of someone who loved their TV show when it had its renaissance in the 80s. Even today that show will make me chuckle with its irreverent humor. But the music is still good, and even if it was handed to them on a silver platter, they still had to be The Monkees, on screen, in the studio, eventually on tour, and maybe most importantly, for the fans. 

A clip from an episode where the devil buys Peter’s soul in exchange for the ability to play the harp. Mike delivers the most moving synopsis of music I’ve ever heard.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d27DdrvT2Ug

Focus: Discuss the Monkees music, the band, the TV show, and their legacy.
"Nostalgia is just the ability to forget the things that sucked" - Nelson DeMille, 'Up Country'

Offline SystematicThought

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Re: The Monkees - official discussion
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2019, 10:51:35 PM »
I actually thought the new album they released a few years back was actually quite good. A very good pop record with catchy tunes. I really liked She Makes Me Laugh and Birth of an Accidental Hipster.

Other than that, I don’t know much about them. Other than Marcia had a crush on Davy Jones on The Brady Bunch
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Online Zydar

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Re: The Monkees - official discussion
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2019, 12:20:57 AM »
Such a great and underrated band. I get annoyed when they get criticised about not playing on their own stuff. They had the studio aces in The Wrecking Crew playing on lots of their songs - the same guys that were used by the Beach Boys, The Byrds, and many other big acts. But somehow The Monkees got singled out every time.

My favourite album is either 'Headquarters' or 'Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones Ltd'. I tend to listen more to 'Headquarters' nowadays. Those two albums is where they took more control, played the majority of the instruments and wrote more of the songs themselves. Songs like 'You Just May Be The One' and 'Pleasant Valley Sunday' are just classics. The 50th anniversary album is kind of great too - 'You Bring The Summer', 'Me & Magdalena', and 'She Makes Me Laugh' are very good songs from outside writers.

Oh, and if you've seen the movie 'Head' from 1968 - it's one of the trippiest movies from that era :lol Weird stuff, but it has a few great songs like 'Circle Sky' and 'Can You Dig It'.

Online Zook

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Re: The Monkees - official discussion
« Reply #3 on: February 12, 2019, 07:24:54 AM »
The thing I remember most about The Monkees is the theme song and the episode where they were shooting people with their hands.

Offline Cool Chris

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Re: The Monkees - official discussion
« Reply #4 on: February 12, 2019, 10:23:03 AM »
I thought my Monkee knowledge was pretty extensive, but I just learned very recently Mike envisioned the band being:

Peter on guitar - Mike thought he was a better guitarist then himself
Mike on bass - His bass skills were solid
Davy on drums - Davy had training on drums
Micky as vocalist - Clearly their best vocalist who should be out front

My favourite album is either 'Headquarters' or 'Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones Ltd'.

Mine too. I'd probably put PAC&J slightly ahead of Headquarters, but they could flip any given day. There is quite a bit of depth on those albums missing from the more straightforward pop/rock oriented first two albums.

Oh, and if you've seen the movie 'Head' from 1968 - it's one of the trippiest movies from that era :lol Weird stuff, but it has a few great songs like 'Circle Sky' and 'Can You Dig It'.

Oddly I've never seen this all the way through. I've read it's pretty revolutionary in terms of film making.
"Nostalgia is just the ability to forget the things that sucked" - Nelson DeMille, 'Up Country'

Offline ProfessorPeart

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Re: The Monkees - official discussion
« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2019, 10:43:46 AM »
I've always loved The Monkees. I have the whole TV show on DVD, a box set of music and a handful of albums. I loved watching the show as a kid and always enjoyed the music. The Mike songs are usually some of my favorites. Although, Shades of Grey might be my actual favorite.

Their 1996 album Justus was also quite good. Written and performed entirely by them.

Head is always something that has eluded me. I keep meaning to buy a copy as I have never seen it and I want it to sit next to my TV show box sets.
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Offline SoundscapeMN

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Re: The Monkees - official discussion
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2019, 10:46:31 AM »
 :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad: :sad:

When Davy passed away a few years ago it was really hard for my wife (and myself by extension).

With Peter passing away, it feels similar if not worse.

At least he is at peace now as he had the cancer for quite awhile. I want to say at least since I've known my wife which I met her in 2011.

I'm gonna have to write something detailed in my blog soon about this.

I do wonder now if the Mike & Micky tour will feature some Peter tunes in tribute/memory.

Offline Cool Chris

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Re: The Monkees - official discussion
« Reply #8 on: February 21, 2019, 10:57:44 AM »
Just saw that and came to post. Peter was always my least favorite Monkee on the show (so let's say the character of "Peter" was my least favorite). Could be perhaps because he was playing a character least like who he was in real life, whereas the other three were more playing versions of themselves. 

Quote
“I refute any claims that any four guys could’ve done what we did,” Tork told Guitar World in 2013. “There was a magic to that collection. We couldn’t have chosen each other. It wouldn’t have flown. But under the circumstances, they got the right guys.”

There is much truth to this, with a caveat. There was definitely a magic to the 4 of them, as individuals and as a unit. On the flip side, the fact that they didn't find each other organically hurt them in the long run after they left Kirchner. They each had their own musical proclivities. That can certainly work. A band can blend different styles together to make them their own. But after PAC&J their albums start to sound more disjointed because of the different styles each band member brought to the table. Bands usually come together based on a unified musical direction. Think how JP and JM hooked up with MP at Berklee when they realized they all liked Rush (I think that is how the story goes?)
"Nostalgia is just the ability to forget the things that sucked" - Nelson DeMille, 'Up Country'