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April 2, 2010 by  
Filed under archive tour

Dolenz, Jones and Tork

(June – December 1997)

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“The Monkees did something I haven’t seen a ‘real’ band do in a while–entertain.  Dolenz proved himself an accomplished drummer, and Tork threw in a nice slide guitar solo (“Lucille”)…but mostly this gig was about showmanship and working an audience.  I left feeling sad that these guys were pretty much the last successful extension of pre-rock pop, matching great songwriters who might never be heard with performers who know how to do more than grumble into a microphone.”
Chicago Tribune review of the Monkees’ concert at the Star Plaza Theatre in
Merrillville, Indiana, 8/1/97

  • Last Train To Clarksville
  • Look Out (Here Comes Tomorrow)
  • The Girl I Knew Somewhere
  • That Was Then, This Is Now
  • For Pete’s Sake
  • Regional Girl
  • I Wanna Be Free
  • Oh My My
  • Valleri
  • I Believe You
  • Words
  • A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You
  • Zilch / Randy Scouse Git  (featuring Micky playing the tympani drum)
  • Oh, What A Night
  • Long Title: Do I Have To Do This All Over Again
  • Heart And Soul
  • Porpoise Song (Theme from Head)
  • Listen To The Band
  • You And I  (Justus version)
  • Peter Percival Patterson’s Pet Pig Porky
  • Pleasant Valley Sunday
  • I’ll Be Back Up On My Feet
  • Lucille  (Peter solo)
  • Purple Haze bit  (Micky)
  • Since I Fell For You  (Micky solo)
  • Girl  (Davy solo)
  • Goin’ Down
  • Higher And Higher
  • I’m A Believer
  • (I’m Not Your) Steppin’ Stone
  • Daydream Believer
  • Encore:
  • No Time
  • Also performed at various dates were “Mary Mary,” “It’s Not Too Late,” “Circle Sky” (original version), “I’ll Love You Forever,” “Your Auntie Grizelda,” “Shades Of Gray” (Davy lead vocal), “For Pete’s Sake,” “It’s Nice To Be With You,” “Daddy’s Song,” “She’s Movin’ In With Rico” and “Every Step Of The Way.”


The 1997 American performances were marred by disappointment after Mike backed out of the much anticipated American portion of the Justus tour, scheduled to take place in the summer of 1997.  Instead, Micky, Davy and Peter went on the road with a show that combined elements of the previous summer North American tour and the 1997 tour of the United Kingdom. With Nesmith not on board, the whole concept of the Justus tour vanished, and the three Monkees returned with their backing band in tow.  However, the trio was able to be more experimental with the play list, retrieving the Justus songs and “Porpoise Song” from the UK set and adding “Words” and “Oh My My,” two songs which had never been previously played in a live setting.  The band once again included Jerry Renino (bass), Wayne Avers (guitar), Aviva Maloney (saxophones/flute/keyboards), Sandy Gennaro (drums) and Kincaid Miller (keyboards).

The Monkees were very involved instrumentally.  Micky played the drums for almost the entire show, as well as rhythm guitar.  Peter played electric/bass/lead guitar, keyboards and banjo, while Davy played the tambourine, maracas and occasionally an electric-acoustic guitar. The Monkees and their band appeared on the “Today” show during their ‘Summer Concert Series’ to promote the tour and Justus.  At that particular time, the Monkees attracted the largest crowd to date for the “Today” show’s summer concerts outside in Rockefeller Plaza in New York City.  After the Monkees’ performance at Giants Stadium in San Francisco, California on June 20, 1997, Davy attended a concert by U2 held the next day at the Los Angeles Coliseum in Los Angeles, California.  He took the stage during a performance of “Daydream Believer” by U2 guitarist The Edge and took over on lead vocals, much to the delight of the surprised crowd.

Because the promised tour of the original quartet never happened, attendance was mediocre for the ’97 North American tour.  Attendance figures at the shows initially started off strong.  However, as the tour progressed, ticket sales were disappointing and in some markets, nowhere near the numbers the 1996 North American tour posted.  Plans for a subsequent visit to Australia in early 1998 were later cancelled.  A tour of Japan was also reconsidered because of the poor Japanese economy.  It is unlikely that these Far East dates would have even occurred as Davy openly expressed his desire to no longer tour with the Monkees when the ’97 tour ended.

The reunion of 1996-1997 saw a new Monkees album, a TV special and concert tours.  The final part of the band’s original plan was to make another motion picture, and at one point a deal was extremely close to being signed.  Sometime in 1996 Michael Nesmith and legendary Hollywood producer Brandon Tartikoff sold an idea for a movie to two producers, who later approached the Monkees with exclusive contracts in the summer of 1998.  Micky, Peter and Michael were ready to commit, but Davy refused to sign.  Jones adamantly protested that he was unhappy with negotiations and the overall layout of the movie plans.  As a result, the four Monkees returned to their individual careers.

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