“I’m Ric Klein, And I Lived With The Monkees On Their Tour!
“Starting Right Now, I’ll Share Every Groovy And True Monkee Happening With You!”
Ric Klein is Micky Dolenz’ best friend, and served as the Stage Manager of the entire Monkees tour. He is also Micky’s stand-in, and the best of friends with Peter, Mike and Davy. Ric covered every spectacular second of The Monkees Tour exclusively for FLIP! He kept a day-by-day diary of everything the boys did, and he took hundreds of candid pictures. This once-in-a-lifetime scoop starts on the very next page of this issue of fab FLIP!
After five days in Paris, which were exciting and interesting and included a three-hour traffic jam The Monkees created, we left for London at 10:30 in the evening on Air France flight #860. The tour officially started in London, where we did five concerts. We landed in London at 11:35 p.m., but the airport was crowded with fans even though it was nearly midnight. We were all very tired, so we went directly to our hotel (the Royal Gardens) to get some sleep.
Micky, Davy, Mike and Peter slept late. But they had to be at Wembley, the stadium where they were doing their concerts, at 1 o’clock for a rehearsal. They made it, and went through the rehearsal, which lasted two hours, with The Epifocal Phringe and Lulu, who were appearing on the show with them. After the rehearsal, the boys had a press conference (they only held two all summer—this one in London and another in New York). Then, everyone went back to the hotel. There were crowds in Kensington Park, across the street from the Royal Gardens Hotel, day and night, all the time The Monkees were in London. And the boys made very frequent appearances. Mike was staying in room #551, Davy had #550, Micky had #547 and Peter was in #546. Davy’s old-time friends, Basil and Boots, came to the hotel and he spent the evening with them.
There was a rehearsal at 1 o’clock at Wembley. In the hotel lobby, all the boys met singer Pearl Bailey, who, it turned out, was very much interested in Eastern Religion. Peter and Micky were given books on the subject by her. The President of Liberia and his large party were also staying in the hotel, which made it a pretty busy place. That night was the first concert, and the boys arrived late for it because of fantastic traffic jams. They used a “decoy” car, by the way, to get into the stadium unnoticed (with four other guys riding in the limousine everyone expected them to arrive in). It was a great show, and a great crowd. Later in the evening, Micky and Mike went to The Speakeasy, one of London’s “in” clubs.
Brian Jones, of The Rolling Stones, came by the hotel to see Micky, whom he had met earlier in the month at the Monterey Pop Festival. Davy went to Wembley for an 11 a.m. rehearsal with the Epifocal Phringe. He also managed to get some soccer practice in. They had two shows, one at 3 and one at 8. Before the shows, Micky and Samantha went shopping at Dandi Fashions and Grannie Takes A Trip. Micky bought a brocaded white Edwardian coat which he wanted to wear for his solo song in the show. The boys stayed at Wembley between shows, listened to the new Beatle songs and had dinner. Mike invited three fans to dinner, and then had them backstage to watch the concert. After the concert, Mike and Micky went to The Speakeasy again.
Two concerts at Wembley again today. Spencer Davis and his wife Pauline and Keith Moon of “The Who” were there, and spent some time with us. Mike was so exhausted that he almost passed out during the concert. Mike and Micky went to The Speakeasy again, and Davy went there as well as to the Cromwellian, another club. We used to race our limousines through London, getting our chauffeurs to beat the others (we rode in separate limos). They were wild, wild races, but our driver was the wildest of them all! Late in the evening, we all went to a party at Robbin Alan’s, which lasted until dawn.
Davy went up north today to see his father. Micky and Sam went shopping. Mike went to Radford to pick up his new super-mini car. And Peter stayed in the hotel for most of the day. That night, NEMS held a party at The Speakeasy for The Monkees. George Harrison, Paul McCartney, John Lennon, Jeff Beck, Keith Moon (of The Who) and Eric Clapton (of the Cream) were some of the groovy people at the party. After the party was over, Micky went for a walk in Kensington Park.
Micky went to Kensington Park, where he sang to a crowd of about 400 surprised and happy girls. He stayed until 2 o’clock, and then went shopping with Samantha. Davy returned from the north, after spending two days with his Dad. Phyllis flew in, and Mike took her driving in his new mini (which only broke down once!!).
Mike bought a Mercedes 600, and then spent the evening at The Speakeasy with John Lennon. Peter spent the day with George Harrison and Ringo. At George’s house, Peter and George exchanged thoughts on the sitar and got along like old friends. Micky and Davy went shopping. It was their last night in London, and they all went to a dinner party at the Speakeasy before getting some sleep before their flight to New York.
It was 11 o’clock in London when the boys boarded their jet for New York. But it was only 6 a.m. in New York. This upsidedown time made it possible for them to have a press conference in New York the same afternoon. Fans were waiting at The Warwick Hotel in Manhattan, and the boys sat on their second floor window ledge, their legs dangling, talking to them before and after their hectic press conference. New York was only a stopover for the press conference, with nothing much scheduled. And, after a day during which they crossed the ocean and added six hours to an already busy day, they just wanted to take it easy and get to bed early.
The boys left New York in their own plane, a groovy DC-8 which had The Monkees symbol on the outside and was fabulously comfortable on the inside. Because of the tremendous amount of equipment they need for each concert, a second plane goes along just to haul the equipment. It’s a C-46 cargo model, and we took turns flying in it (because it was considerably less comfortable than the DC-8, which came complete with mini-skirted stewardess). We arrived in Jacksonville about 4, went swimming at our motel (The Heart of Jacksonville Motel) and then went to bed early.
The concert was at 8, and we stayed around the motel for most of the day. After the concert we left for Miami.
We goofed around the pool of the Eden Roc Hotel for most of the day, splashing, getting splashed and getting sun. The concert was at Convention Hall in the evening, after which we returned to the hotel. A couple of the guys went to a few nightclubs.
We all slept late, and then went for a groovy boat trip out in the Atlantic Ocean. It was a 58-foot yacht, and I took lots of pics. Lyn Randall, the girl on the show, The Sundowners and Jimi Hendrix all came along for the happy ride. Afterwards, we still found some time to swim at the pool. All of which made us late for our flight to Charlotte, N.C.
A quiet day at the Red Carpet Inn, with the concert at 8 o’clock in the Coliseum. Afterwards, we left for Greensboro, N.C. by bus because it was so close.
Spent the day at The Oaks Motel, where The Monkees spent lots of time at the pool with many fans. After the concert, we flew to New York. A word here about all the traveling: It’s very complicated, and for the purposes of the official schedule, there was a personnel code which listed us under our Code Numbers rather than our names—making scheduling easier. Micky was given number 1, Peter had number 2, Mike had number 3, Davy had number 4, and I had number 10. But the numbers were chosen at random (the producers of the show, Bert Schneider and Bob Rafelson, had numbers 24 and 25—out of 27 possible numbers).
Arrived at 1:30 in the morning, direct from the Greensboro concert. Stayed at the Hotel Warwick, where fans were waiting when we arrived in the middle of the night. Peter had lunch with his grandmother and Mike saw some relatives during the day. Davy went sightseeing and Micky went to see the hit Broadway show, “Mame.” Then we had dinner at the Voisin Restaurant before getting back to the Warwick. Micky, however, left again to visit The Electric Circus, a wild new discotheque-type club which had just opened in the East Village.
It was a quiet, private day. Mike and Peter basically stayed at the hotel, while Davy and Micky went out on a number of personal visits. One of the few real off days of the entire summer, with not even a rehearsal scheduled. But there was a concert at Forest Hills in the evening, the first of three concerts in New York.
After the second New York show, all of the boys followed Micky’s path and visited the way-out Electric Circus. Micky first had dinner at “Tortilla Flats” in the Village with Steve Sills of The Buffalo Springfield.
This is the exciting day where I’ll pick up my personal diary of everything that happened on The Monkees tour. So very much happened, that I’m sure that you’ll want to reserve your copy today of the next outasite issue of FLIP. It’ll be on sale October 10th, when I’ll be back with more of the private, personal and true experiences I shared with Davy, Micky, Mike and Peter!