AS HE REVEALED THEM TO HIS BEST BRITISH FRIEND—JEREMY PASCALL!
Outside, ten thousand girls screamed at the top of their voices. Inside, the Beatles’ record sang ‘love, love, love’ and middle-aged women kept coming up to Micky Dolenz and ruffling his hair. Micky was tired; the Monkees work hard on stage, harder than anybody I’ve ever seen and he was taking a well-deserved break, sipping an orange juice.
Every [sic] since the boys had flown into London, Micky and I had missed each other. He asked for me at the Press Conference, their first ever and a hilarious affair, but I had not been able to break through the huge henchmen to see him. Next day he ‘phoned me but I was out. Now, at last, we saw each other again at London’s vast Wembley Stadium. I was glad to see him and, I think, he glad to see me. He had changed a bit since the last time we’d met and talked. His clothes wayer out, his hair curlier and his face tireder.
“Man, I’m beat. I hardly know where I am, we’ve been working so hard recently.” I asked him how long he could continued [sic] at this ridiculous rate. “I don’t know” he answered wearily, “some day I’m just gonna stop dead. When? Maybe tonight, stick around.”
It was a much more subdued Micky. Not so many gags, no leaping around, the smile came less frequently, less easily. His face was paler, with lines of tiredness instead of laughter, around the mouth. I was sorry to see them. But the enthusiasm was still there and a glint of excitement in those eyes.
“How about all this,” he gasped waving his hand around the scene, “isn’t it too much? Do you know there were five hundred girls outside the hotel? I didn’t expect such a welcome. The kids have been marvellous. I think this is the best pop place I’ve ever been to except for Monterey. Monterey was beautiful, beautiful. Do you know they sent hundreds of police in the first day ’cos they expected trouble? The next day the Chief of Police pulled most of them out and suggested they go back with their wives and children to dig the scene! The Chief even walked around with flowers in his hat! That’s GROOVY. I wish we could do something like that.
“You see, the trouble is that these people, the hippies and all, won’t accept us. They don’t believe that we dig the same things as they do. You see we ENTERTAIN. We do one of the most difficult things in the world, we entertain young kids. We make them laugh, make them happy. I’m not ashamed of what we do, I’m proud of it but I would like to be accepted in other roles, as an actor, a clown a musician. I want to make different music like the Beatles do. Not WHAT the Beatles but I want to progress in a similar direction. I realise now that we’re bound to be compared to them, it can’t be helped. I don’t want to challenge them, don’t want to compete with them, I just want to try and move in the same direction.
“There’s more than one Micky Dolenz. I’m very interested in electronic music and I’m doing things in that field. Soon I think I’ll make a record under another name doing what I want.” I asked him if he’d go back to being Micky Braddock. “No, it’ll be something completely new so nobody will know it’s me. That’s very important, it mustn’t be a solo Micky Monkee, it must be Micky Dolenz.”
Micky’s tiredness became apparant [sic] by the minute. He had a camera in his hand with which he had been taking snaps of me. When he finished the reel he pulled the flash bulb out and started pulling it to pieces. He looked very up tight, I asked him if he was happy. “Yeah. Everything we do we’ve chosen to do. Like this big tour of America, the shooting in France and the concerts here. When they were being talked about we thought we could do them all, on paper it looked easy. We hadn’t had the experience to know how tough it all is. One day I’m just gonna say no, and there’s not much they can do about that. But we’ve had no rest. Man, I really need to get away.”
Last time Micky was over he had hoped to get down to my home on the coast to catch a few days rest on the beach, in the country. I wondered if he and Samantha couldn’t make it this visit. “Yeah. This would be nice. The more I think about it, the nicer it seems. But I don’t know if we can make it. When we finish here we’ve got more shooting and the US tour. It’d would be nice to get away, drop out for a couple of days. Maybe I could paint and go to a country pub. Do you have those little pubs on winding lanes?” I assured him we did. “Great. But I don’t know. If I went to the bowling and use just as much energy. Even painting, you have to put everything into it.” Micky does nothing by halves. Even on stage he won’t just give his all, he’ll give more and then more. He’s without a doubt one of the most professional, talented, energetic performers in pop. And his timing and skill are faultless. Micky Dolenz doing James Brown is an experience never to be missed!
We talked and talked. Just about taking the conversation up where we had left it off all those months ago. And despite his fatigue, Micky signed the autographs for the canteen staff, accepted their maternal embraces and embarrassingly ignorant compliments without a wince. The autographs were signed automatically and the smile switched on and off but he did all with his usual courteousness and patience. Many pop stars I know would have screamed the pestering women away. Micky is used to be being everybody’s property. How would you react if people kept staring and pointing at you, pushing in rudely on your conversations, interrupted your meals, I’d go raving mad. Micky just smiles… and says nothing.
That’s why being with Micky is such a pleasure. I can truthfully say that he is one of my favorite pop people. A thinking, intelligent boy with his own mind. A person I’ve never intereviewed [sic]; simply talked with. A professional of the highest order. It’s a pity to see him eaten up by the ordeals his chosen life inflict upon him but he says: “It’s what I’ve chosen to do, what I do best. I realized what it would be like when I took it on and I shouldn’t complain when the pressure gets tough… But I do wish I could get some rest!”