It’s been two years since Monkees man Davy Jones died following a heart attack and, for many people, that was it for the band. However, Mike Nesmith returned to the fold and now, Micky Dolenz, Peter Tork, and Nesmith are taking the old band out on the road again. It’ll be different, but different isn’t always bad. We grabbed the ever-chirpy Dolenz to get his take …
1. Is it still weird playing without Davy?
Well, it was. We did a couple of tours since he passed. The first one was definitely weird. That was not long after he passed. It wasn’t the official Davy Jones memorial tour, but we definitely had the tribute and paid homage. Yeah, it was tough, especially when we did “Daydream Believer.” Mike Nesmith actually came up with the wonderful idea of having the crowd sing it.
2. Is Detroit a place that you’ve always liked coming to?
Yeah, all over the Midwest and the East Coast. But Detroit is very specifically huge. I remember in ’86, doing the first reunion, we came and played the big arena there (Pine Knob). I think we sold it out, and it was just phenomenal. There’s quite a history Monkee-wise, because on the first tour in ’67, we were slated to come to Detroit for a huge concert, and that’s when you had the riots. They had to cancel the concert.
3. What can we expect from this set?
We always incorporate the big hits. I think the fans really want to hear those songs as they remember, and we all sort of agree on that. When we’re not doing the big hits, we have a few options. We can dig deep into the album cuts, which we have and which we do frequently. Now we have Mike back in the mix; it’s been absolutely wonderful because we’ve always done a lot of Nesmith tunes in the show because he wrote so many great, great songs for us.
4. Do you get requests for songs from Head?
In fact, the last couple of tours, we’ve done all the songs from Head — every one. I mean, there were only six of them, but that was a huge section. We also showed video from the movie. That’s the other thing that we do — and always have — is show a lot of video. Because of the TV show, we have quite a library of video material. In fact, on the first tour in ’67, if I’m not mistaken we were the first band to ever bring a huge screen and show video. We actually brought a 35 mm projector on the road with us.
5. Are there any plans for new material?
We’re always talking about it. We did an album in ’97 called Just Us with Mike — all four of us, and we toured England with that album. There’s nothing in the mix right now. There aren’t any plans or anything, but I certainly wouldn’t mind. I love it. Again, with Mike back in the mix, he’s such a great writer — I can see it happening one day. mt
The Monkees play at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 30, at the Fox Theatre, 2211 Woodward Ave., Detroit, 313-471-3200; $48-$1,278.
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