A new TiGER BEAT monthly column from us to you… by Davy, Peter, Mike, & Micky
Each month in TiGER BEAT the Monkees tell all about themselves and their lives… in their own words!
I’ve had the most incredible experiences since I’ve become a Monkee. Take vacations. Ordinarily when you want to go on a vacation you just pick a place you’d like to go, take off and have a good time, right? Wrong, if you’re a Monkee.
For instance, you can’t even pick a place you’d like to go to. Instead you have to limit yourself to the places you’ll be welcome. You think that Monkees are welcome anywhere? Wish it were so, but how would you like it if you owned a hotel and suddenly every fan within fifty miles was crashing your lobby trying to get upstairs, trying to bribe your help, making a traffic jam around the hotel and keeping other guests (the paying kind) out because of it? Not very much, right? So you’ve got to be certain that you aren’t going to cause a commotion.
On my last vacation I though [sic] I’d picked the perfect place—the parts of Texas where you can drive for miles and miles and not see anyone at all. John London and I set out, eager for a vacation and sure that we wouldn’t bother anyone and also that we wouldn’t be noticed. We traveled through miles of wilderness and finally we came to this old beat-up gas station with one pump. It looked like the older man who “ran” the station only got a customer once every couple of months or so it was so deserted. We gassed up and then set out again.
We traveled quite a few more miles before we discovered that way back in the distance there was a dust cloud following us and it kept getting bigger and bigger. Suddenly the dust cloud was on us and it turned out to be a couple of carloads of Monkee fans. The man in the gas station had recognized us and told his daughters who told their friends who told… Here we were, miles from anything and I was still Mike the Monkee. We smiled and started signing autographs because the whole thing was pretty funny, after all.
After that, though, I really wanted a vacation. You’ve no idea how the pressure can build when you have to be a Monkee all the time, no matter how much you like it. John and I went down to the Gulf and got a boat and we set course twenty miles straight out to sea. We were floating lazily around out there, twenty miles off the coast mind you, and over the horizon comes another boat. We didn’t think too much about it until the boat headed straight for us! It stopped right next to us and guess what? A boatload of Monkee fans! Twenty miles out to sea, twenty miles! The girls were so happy to see us we got sort of happy, too. We signed autographs and did the whole Monkee bit. It sure was an unusual place to be a Monkee.
I learned a few things that time. Vacations were not made for Monkees, or maybe Monkees were not made for vacations. I think that from now on I’ll spend any vacations I get in my own back yard. I’ve got my own pool and what else do you need? Of course, I’ve been told that the gardener’s daughter is a Monkee fan, and her friends are Monkee fans and…
If you should happen to drop by my house and find me home (which doesn’t happen very often), you’d probably find me making a model or a wire sculpture or something like that. I really enjoy all my hobbies and most of them involve making something or other.
Whenever I get the chance I go to a store called Kit Kraft where they have hundreds and hundreds of different things for people who like handcrafting hobbies. I spend a lot of my free time there, just looking around at all the different things they have. Then, likely as not, I’ll leave the store with more things than I can ever finish at home. I see something I like and then right next to it is something else I like and so I go through the store picking out just about everything.
After I get home I start right in, that is, after I pick which one of the things I brought home I’m going to do first! Usually I want to do them all first so I just close my eyes and pick something out of the bundle. It’s the only way I can make up my mind!
While I’m building it I’m usually thinking of who can give it to when I’m through. I keep a lot of my work but most of it I give away for gifts to people I know well. Most everyone likes the things I make but sometimes I get some strange looks when I present one of my fantastic, outasite Micky Dolenz originals! They never refuse to take it though. I guess they’re afraid they might hurt my feelings. Or maybe they really do like it but they’re startled because it’s so original.
I even take my hobbies with me to the studio. I’ve got some of my tools in my dressing room and when there’s a break in filming I’m able to work on whatever I’m doing at the time. It’s sure great when you can go from one thing you really enjoy, like filming the Monkees show, to another thing you enjoy, like your hobbies. I think I’m one of the luckiest guys around.
I think it’s so great to see a girl with freckles. I’ve had freckles all my life and I really like them because they add so much interest to a person’s face. It’s really funny when I see girls with lots of makeup on trying to cover their freckles up because as far as I’m concerned that’s one of the most attractive features a girl can have. And it doesn’t matter if she’s just got a few sprinkled across her nose or whether she’s got them all over—either way they look great!
When we’re filming I have to wear makeup and I sure wish there were some way I could wear makeup and still let my freckles show. It seems a little silly to say I’d rather girls with freckles let theirs show and then turn around and cover my own up. But unfortunately makeup is a necessity for TV filming and I sure don’t wear it any time I don’t have to!
You see, freckles mean a lot more to me than just freckles. To me they mean that whoever has them is my kind of person. I like natural looking people, especially girls, and if you let your freckles show you’re a natural kind of person, right? The kind of person I really dig is more concerned with being beautiful inside than being beautiful outside. don’t think beautiful faces or beautiful clothes are that important. Instead I think people ought to concentrate on being good, honest, open people and then they’d be beautiful even if they didn’t have anything else.
I think that more and more we’re beginning to appreciate how nice people really look when they’re just themselves. So many people think they have to spend lots of money and time in beauty parlors and barber shops to look nice but if they’d just relax and be themselves they’d find that they are beautiful without all that hassle.
So if you have freckles, be proud of them for they say good things about you. Don’t cover them up with makeup and don’t try in any way to get rid of them. They’re beautiful and if you let them show you’ll be beautiful too.
I got brand new hobby on the tour this summer—photography! I never took a lot of pictures in the past but now that I’ve started I’m really hooked.
It’s funny. When you’re a Monkee people are always taking pictures of you but you never get any pictures of them! You know that your picture is in lots of scrapbooks but your own scrapbook is pretty empty. So this summer I got to start my own collection of outasite fan photos and when I get a few unoccupied moments I’m going to start organizing my scrapbook.
We all got cameras before we left on the tour so we started taking pictures of everyone else from the very beginning of the tour in Paris. Whenever a fan would take my picture I’d turn around and take a picture of her for my own collection. Now I’m going to have something to look at when I’m old and grey and not able to work anymore. (Will that ever happen?)
One thing I found out right at the beginning—there sure is a difference between professional photographers and amateurs! It looks so easy when someone like Bob Custer takes your picture. It always seemed to me that he just looked through the camera and pushed the little button that clicks the shutter. Well, I tried doing the same thing and the pictures didn’t look at all like his!
My pictures were dark or light or blurred or just plain flat at the beginning. I wanted to learn how to take really good pictures so I started learning as much as could and finally my pictures started looking a lot better. They still aren’t the way I’d like them to be, though, so I’m having Bob teach me little by little the tricks of the trade. Eventually maybe I’ll be a good photographer, too.
I still take my camera around with me. There are so many interesting pictures to be taken and if you see something good and you want to photograph it you’re out of luck if you don’t have your camera. I wish there was more time for me just to take pictures but I guess it’s one of those things where you don’t ever really have enough time.
I sure wish all of you could see the pictures I took this summer. Maybe you’ll even be able to see yourselves in them! I think TiGER BEAT and Monkee Spectacular will be printing some of them—I hope so because I think some of them are really groovy. I hope when you see them that you’ll like them as much as I do.