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Thread: Peter Tork, endearingly offbeat bassist and singer in the Monkees, dies at 77

  1. #26
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    Sad. I was actually hoping for another album! "Good Times," the one they put out 2-3 years ago was surprisingly strong and was a car-music hit with the whole family.

    During the media campaign for Good Times Tork had a funny line when asked how much longer they would keep doing shows. He said: even if there's only one of us left, he could sing "Hey Hey I'm the Monkee!"

    RIP.

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by GuitarGeek View Post
    They were doing that last summer. Mickey and Mike played here together, billed as "The Monkees: The Mike And Mickey Show" or something like that. Unfortunately, I lost track of when the show was happening and missed it.
    I could swear that the last time they came through here it was Mikey and Peter, but I could be wrong about that. I thought the Nesmith had retired from live performance after his fairwell tour with the Monkees a few years ago, which is why I was surprised to see his name on the casino add. I am kind of thinking about going to it. I saw the Monkees one time back in the 80's (just the trio, no Nesmith). It was a fun show, although a bit campy and they had a ton of extra musicians on stage, so the 3 Monkees mostly just sang, but it would be cool to see Nesmith.

  3. #28
    I'm remembering something I read in a Monkees book that came out sometime in the 90's I think... saying how Peter just wanted to be a hippie musician in a band, part of a cool music community, and in the later years of the Monkees and after he left, some people in the music community and hangers-on took advantage of him by "flashing peace signs" and talking hippie B.S. to get in his door, then hanging out at his place, eating his food and helping themselves to whatever else he had around.

    One pretty amazing thing about the Monkees is the half-dozen or more alternate versions of songs that surfaced later on in the "missing links" compilations, with different lead vocalists! Just imagine if there were alternate takes of Beatles songs in the can with different members taking the lead vocals.

    Another overlooked item in the Monkees catalog is the 1976 Dolenz, Jones, Boyce and Hart album. Two Monkees and their two main songwriters. As expected, it was on the bubblegum end of the scale given the participants, but it was still a fun album in '76 when I was lamenting the Monkees short-lived run.

    "Moustache stays right where it's at" - Clutch

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveSly View Post
    Also check out Youtube clips from the "Justus" tour in the 80's. It was just the four of them with no extra musicians.
    I saw them on that tour. I seem to recall that they started off with just the four of them, but in the second half brought on a lot of extra musicians and did songs like 'Listen to the Band' and 'Porpoise Song'.

    Here's a clip from the show I saw:

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

    Nesmith did 'Rio' as his solo spot, and Tork did a blues song. I think it might have been called Lucille.

  5. #30
    Member Guitarplyrjvb's Avatar
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    Given the ubiquitous presence of studio musicians on many classic rock recordings, I think the Monks were always unfairly maligned. As far as songwriting goes, one of the biggest acts of the day, Three Dog Night, didin't write most of their material. Same goes for many country musicians. The fact remains that they made several very catchy tunes regardless.

  6. #31
    The Monkees first made me want to play guitar. Peter was my favorite Monkee. Ave atque vale.
    Maka ki ecela tehani yanke lo!

  7. #32
    Member mnprogger's Avatar
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    people should try and catch one of the Mike & Micky shows coming up per an obvious tribute should be worth seeing alone.

  8. #33
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    Sorry to hear this. Was only listening to them the other day actually.

    Quote Originally Posted by Guitarplyrjvb View Post
    Given the ubiquitous presence of studio musicians on many classic rock recordings, I think the Monks were always unfairly maligned. As far as songwriting goes, one of the biggest acts of the day, Three Dog Night, didin't write most of their material. Same goes for many country musicians. The fact remains that they made several very catchy tunes regardless.
    Agreed. This is one (and definitely not the only) area where, as a rock fan, I have always departed from so-called 'rockist' thinking- it is certainly this which has kept them out of the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. I remember Mickey Dolenz on a documentary saying that with writers the calibre of Neil Diamond, Goffin/King, David Gates etc., it was pretty hard to miss.

  9. #34
    Progga mogrooves's Avatar
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    I submit that The Monkees significance is less musical than generational, in that their clout in Hollywood was such that a new generation of young actors and film makers who entered into their orbit got a foot in the door at a time when the film industry was struggling and desperately in need of new blood and ideas. Personally, while I dug their television show, I couldn't get with the pre-fab's music.
    Michael: "Harold, don't you have any other music, you know, from [last] century?"
    Harold: "There is no other music....."

  10. #35
    Orange Tick Squasher Buddhabreath's Avatar
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    I like Head. (Don't say it).
    The combined fortunes of the world's 26 richest individuals reached $1.4 trillion last year — the same amount as the total wealth of the 3.8 billion poorest people.

  11. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by Guitarplyrjvb View Post
    the ubiquitous presence of studio musicians on many classic rock recordings,
    Well, during the 60's, yeah. In the Wrecking Crew documentary, there's talk of how one of the things that sort of brought the curtain down on that era, was bands insisting they be allowed to play on their own records. Yeah, there were still a lot of studio guys deputizing on various records here and there, but I think by and large, during the 70's, a lot of the bands actually played on their own records. Or maybe everybody signed confidentiality agreements, and couldn't talk about it.

    On the other hand, you'd think if there was anyone who wanted to "protect the mystique" and have some sort of legal gag order in place for that purpose, it would be Gene Simmons. But Kiss were one of the first bands from that era I remember learning had used studio musicians, though the reports of some people (specifically a certain Dick Wagner groupie on this very forum) I suspect were greatly exaggerated.

    But you are correct that it is unfair that everyone picked (and in some quarters, continues to pick) on The Monkees for not playing on their records.
    As far as songwriting goes, one of the biggest acts of the day, Three Dog Night, didin't write most of their material. Same goes for many country musicians.
    Actually, there were a lot of people still making heavy use of outside writers and cover tunes in the 60's. Everyone likes to think Meet The Beatles came out, and suddenly, everyone's writing their own material. Hell, even The Beatles weren't writing their own material at that point, or not much of it anyway. There's a lot of covers on those first few Beatles records. Same thing with the Rolling Stones. The first Grateful Dead album, which came out in 1967, also made heavy use of cover tunes.

    A lot of times, things were still being controlled by the producers, during that era. So, say if the producer was a songwriter, or if he had a bunch of friends who were songwriters, that's where a lot of material that ended up on those records came from. I remember Gregg Allman saying one of the things he hated about the Hour Glass records, was the producer would say "Oh, yeah, I owe this guy a couple favors, so you're gonna do a couple of his songs, because I said so".

    I think one of the reasons that there was a shift towards bands and solo performers writing their own material was, after awhile, everyone started to figure out where the real money in the music biz was, and that was in publishing. So if you wrote your own songs, you made more money. And if you find out you actually have a talent for writing good songs, you might resent the idea that some asshole you've never met, or only just barely know, is dictating to you what songs you're gonna sing.

    But getting back to the Monkees: they actually wrote quite a few of their songs. I know the first two or three records, the ones that were produced by Boyce/Hart and Kirshner, were heavy on outside writers. As I understand it, they'd let Tork and Nesmith each have one song, just to "keep them quiet", but after awhile, that wasn't enough. After Kirshner got fired by Col-Gems, their names started appearing in the bylines more often, and although Headquarters is really the only record during their original existence where they played the majority of the instruments, they still retained more control over things in a way that hadn't when Herr Kirshner was in charge of things.

  12. #37
    Member Vic2012's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buddhabreath View Post
    I like Head. (Don't say it).
    ..........

  13. #38
    An old band of mine opened for Mr. Tork when his band came through Richmond maybe 10-15 years ago. It was a fun time...kind of surreal to hear the organ riff from "I'm a Believer" in a soundcheck.

    RIP PT
    Ephemeral Sun - because I gotta do something about these boxes of CDs in the basement: http://www.ephemeralsun.com

  14. #39
    Member mnprogger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arturs View Post
    Sad. I was actually hoping for another album! "Good Times," the one they put out 2-3 years ago was surprisingly strong and was a car-music hit with the whole family.

    During the media campaign for Good Times Tork had a funny line when asked how much longer they would keep doing shows. He said: even if there's only one of us left, he could sing "Hey Hey I'm the Monkee!"

    RIP.
    they released a Holiday (Christmas) Album back in October "Christmas Party."

    Also with that, they continued their working with Adam Schlesinger of Fountains of Wayne. Rivers Cuomo and Andy Partridge both wrote a tune on it.

    There has been some quotes saying they would like to make another, but now with Peter gone, anything from him would be similar to how they included Davy on Christmas Party and Good Times!

    but given the interest, Schlesinger, Cuomo, Partridge, Ben Gibbard, Peter Buck (and others from The Minus 5), along with probably Glenn Tillbrook of Squeeze who wrote some music that didn't make it onto Good Times! but they may still want to record and release.

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harbottle View Post
    I saw them on that tour. I seem to recall that they started off with just the four of them, but in the second half brought on a lot of extra musicians and did songs like 'Listen to the Band' and 'Porpoise Song'.

    Here's a clip from the show I saw:

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

    Nesmith did 'Rio' as his solo spot, and Tork did a blues song. I think it might have been called Lucille.
    You are correct. They started off the tour by doing a club show with just the four of them in L.A., but their big shows were just the four of them for the first half, then with additional musicians for the 2nd half.

  16. #41
    Now we’re on to a The Monkees in general, I’ll put my hat into the ring here...I have watched Head more than any other movie.
    For a year or so in the nineties I watched it pretty much every week.
    I still watch it about once a year.

  17. #42
    Quote Originally Posted by Kavus Torabi View Post
    Now we’re on to a The Monkees in general, I’ll put my hat into the ring here...I have watched Head more than any other movie.
    For a year or so in the nineties I watched it pretty much every week.
    I still watch it about once a year.

    I haven't watched that much, but it's one of those movies where I know most of the picture by heart. I actually think I saw the movie before I ever saw the TV show, because HBO or Cinemax ran it back in the mid 80's, a year or two ahead of MTV kicked off their big revival.

    I've always heard the story that the band intended the movie (and it's soundtrack) to kill off their teenybopper image and reinvent them as a "serious" rock n roll band that "wasn't just for kids" or whatever. But the way the movie was promoted initially, and a lot of people summarily dismissed it just because it was "The Monkees movie". I believe years later, Mike Nesmith said that Bob Rafelson and Bert Schneider "hung the group out to dry" with the movie, i.e. they wanted to kill off The Monkees so they could move onto "bigger and better things" (i.e. Easy Rider), which is why the movie starts with Mickey jumping off the bridge (and ends with all four of them jumping).

    But I've always thought it was a great movie. How can you not love a picture that has Sonny Liston, Annette Funicello, Frank Zappa, Teri Garr, Toni Basil, Victor Mature, Timothy Carey, Logan Ramsey, Bob Rafelson, Dennis Hopper, and Jack Nicholson in it?!

    The scene where the cop grills Mickey, Peter, and Mike, in the men's room, about the whereabouts of Davy is one of my favorite bits, especially Mickey's explanation that, "The last time we saw him was in the john...eh, comfort room!" (the self-correction probably being an acknowledgement of the then relatively recent abolition of the Hayes Code, which would have surely prevented one from saying "john", as a euphemism for "bathroom" or "Men's room" in a movie)
    Last edited by GuitarGeek; 02-24-2019 at 03:53 PM.

  18. #43
    ^ NOBODY EVER LENDS MONEY TO A MAN WITH A SENSE OF HUMOR

  19. #44
    Also, my first ‘studio’ (spare bedroom) was called ‘The Cop’s Dream’.

    NO ONE ever got the reference!

  20. #45
    I had to track down the Bela Lugosi movie that's excerpted among the TV programs that are playing as Big Vic is flipping through the channels. "Superstitious...Perhaps...Mumbo Jumbo...Perhaps not". I think it's called The Black Cat, and also had Boris Karloff in it.

    And I always got a kick out of Ralph Williams, owner of "the world's largest Ford dealership".

  21. #46
    Quote Originally Posted by Buddhabreath View Post
    I like Head. (Don't say it).
    It!

    It! It!
    Maka ki ecela tehani yanke lo!

  22. #47
    This is getting pretty far from Peter Tork, but ...

    Yes, The Black Cat featured both Lugosi and Karloff. In all, Bela Lugosi appeared with Boris Karloff in eight films: The Black Cat (1934), The Raven (1935), The Invisible Ray (1936), Son of Frankenstein (1939), You'll Find Out (1940), Black Friday (1940) The Body Snatcher (1945) and Gift of Gab (1934).
    Maka ki ecela tehani yanke lo!

  23. #48
    Member progholio's Avatar
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    I always thought Peter had the coolest hair when i watched the show as a kid (and still do).

    One of my favorite tunes from the 2017 Good Times record -



    RIP

  24. #49
    Quote Originally Posted by Sturgeon's Lawyer View Post
    This is getting pretty far from Peter Tork, but ...

    In all, Bela Lugosi appeared with Boris Karloff in eight films
    There was at least one film they did "together" without appearing in any scenes together.
    The White Zone is for loading and unloading only. If you got to load or unload go to the White Zone.

  25. #50
    Member mnprogger's Avatar
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    A BETTER WORLD

    this song seriously needs more love.

    It's gorgeous, melancholy, inspiring, and seems to have got very overlooked given it was not on the Standard Track List for Good Times! But like my Lifer-Monkees fan wife, I may be of the feeling it's the best Tork track ever, or at least the best written for Good Times!


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