The Monkees

Conceived as America's answer to The Beatles, all four group members of The Monkees - Mike Nesmith, Davy Jones, Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork - were selected in 1965 from a series of auditions to appear in a self-titled TV series about a young pop group. Their quickfire comedy skits and zany personalities made them an instant hit with young audiences, which rapidly developed into a hugely successful recording career, initially using tracks featured in the TV show. These included their breakthrough 1966 hit “Last Train to Clarksville” and “I'm a Believer”, a smash hit all over the world which triggered an impressive series of hits and made them international pop idols, despite their limited musical ability. When their TV series ended in 1968, they starred in their own anarchic movie titled Head and with Tork and Nesmith developing as songwriters, they went on to make six albums, four of which topped the US charts. When Tork quit at the end of 1968, it signaled the beginning of the end of The Monkees. Nesmith quit the following year and Dolenz and Jones released one more album as The Monkees in 1970 before finally calling it quits. The TV series, which had gone out of syndication, was picked up by MTV in 1986 and kickstarted a resurgence of the band’s popularity. There were sporadic reunion tours over the next decade, but only a few shows featured all four original members. In 1996 , the original line-up released a new album, Justus, celebrating their 30th anniversary. Dolenz, Jones and Tork went out on tour with Nesmith joining them on their UK leg in 1997. After a long stretch of touring, the band went on hiatus until 2001 when Tork, Jones, and Dolenz went on the road in the US once more. Tork departed the band under a shroud of mystery, later put down to the heavy drinking that took place on tour while he was a recovering alcoholic. Jones and Dolenz, now the only remaining members of the band, took their music out on the road in the UK and US in 2002, parting ways shortly after to focus on individual projects. In 2011, they performed An Evening With The Monkees: The 45th Anniversary Tour in the UK and then the US. On February 29, 2012, Davy Jones passed away after suffering a fatal heart attack. Jones's death brought about a reunion between Nesmith, Tork and Dolenz, and they went on a short tour to honor their late band mate. They released Good Times!, an album to mark their 50th anniversary in 2016. In 2018, Dolenz and Nesmith announced their intention to tour as The Mike and Micky Show, but their tour was cut short after Nesmith underwent heart surgery. On February 21, 2019, Tork passed away at the age of 77. Dolenz and Nesmith intended to continue The Mike and Micky Show tour in 2020, but it was put on hold because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Once they were able to tour again, The Mike and Micky Show began a 40-date tour in September 2021 and concluded on November 14. Less than a month after the last live performance of this farewell tour, Michael Nesmith died of heart failure on December 10, 2021.

Related Artists

Stations Featuring The Monkees

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