A Conversation With The Monkees, Part II
Get Inside Their Heads And Find Out What’s Really On Their Minds!
If their problem with MTV wasn’t enough, the New York Post says the Monkees find themselves in another fix what with their manager suing them for thousands of bucks! David Fishof filed papers in Manhattan Supreme Court that allege the Monkees stopped paying him his share of their concert fees right after Mr. Fishof renegotiated his contract with them in September of ’86. Davy, Peter and Micky haven’t commented yet, but this wrench could keep their movie, live LP and Broadway show from happening for a while. Add to that the rumor that Peter and his Jennifer have split and you’ve got more Monkeemania than even the Monkees might have expected! Stay tuned!
How do the three of you feel about touring?
MICKY: It’s tough work. I got a lot of respect for guys who do this year in and year out. Last year was seven months for us. I still haven’t recovered from that! It’s a very difficult life, I mean, for me personally it’s the traveling that I hate.
DAVY: Gigs are easy.
MICKY: Yeah, gigs are easy. You commute for 23 hours a day, for an hour and a half job.
DAVY: You can’t do anything during the day.
MICKY: You’re checking in and out of hotels …
DAVY: We’ve got our health, we can always have clean clothes and everything’s fine…
PETER: We almost didn’t except for a washing machine last night at the venue. I almost ran out of clothes!
How did it feel performing in New York City, Peter?
PETER: To be accepted in New York is glorious! The kids come over from Jersey, they come in from the boroughs… For all its sophistication… in some ways, the most enthusiastic audiences we ever get are in New York.
Let’s get a bit personal here. Which one of you is always late?
All: He is!!! (They all point to one another!)
MICKY: Davy… because he can’t see the clock.
DAVY: It’s class. In Japan if you’re not late for a meeting…
MICKY: They lost the war.
PETER: ’Cause they were late.
Who eats the most?
MICKY: Me, I think.
DAVY: None of us eat a lot.
Is there one of you that’s most eccentric than the others?
All eyes went your way Peter…
PETER: My eyes went this way to [sic]! For the record. His eyes crossed!
DAVY: Is anyone shorter? ME!
Do any of you have a temper or blow up a lot?
MICKY: That would be Peter.
DAVY: It all depends when…
PETER: Bam and he’s gone. It’s me. David is the smoldering, fury type.
DAVY: He’s the Norman Bates of rock ’n roll!
PETER: I am not.
MICKY: I sulk.
PETER: You walk around going, ‘Nothing’s wrong, nothing’s wrong.’
MICKY: Yeah. Well, being in the business so young (Micky starred in the TV series Circus Boy when he was ten!), you have to learn how to…
MICKY: Well, you have to learn how to keep it inside or else. Ten years old and you have to be an adult.
You’ve been doing material from your latest album, Pool It… Who sang lead on “Getting In”?
PETER: I sang it and arranged it. Plus I play some of the parts and pushed around the knobs on the tape recorder. In fact, I stood there and pulled the tape through the tape machine!!
For the record, are all of you very involved instrumentally, vocally and in terms of writing and producing the album?
MICKY: No, I didn’t write. We didn’t play much. We had studio instruments. We did all the singing. We are a singing act.
PETER: We are not studio quality musicians.
DAVY: Neither are a lot of people.
MICKY: We’re not a band in that sense. We really never were. We’re an act and we’re a singing act.
PETER: I really loved making Headquarters, the album we made ourselves. It was a high point in my Monkees career…
MICKY: I would like to go back in the studio…
PETER: …It was something. Davy, the rest of us clumsy young garage band musicians. That’s what we were quality-wise.
DAVY: And I owned the garage!
PETER: And he played tambourine and Davy happens to be a master tambourine player. He was voted tenth, seventh and third on David Letterman’s list of great tambourine players.
DAVY: …I still can’t play it.
PETER: Davy would have his part down first take, second take, but the piano player, that’s me, and the bass player, that’s also me, and the guitar player, that’s sometimes me, and the drummer would take 50 takes.
DAVY: But wait a minute. It would be so much different now, ’cause we’re all that much better.
MICKY: But we had to record the album… The Monkees are the Marx Brothers. We were about as musical as they were.
DAVY: We just use our talents within the course of the show. We have no time to stand there and not move…
You have to do schtick…
PETER: That’s right. The point is not the Monkees playing the music. The point is the Monkees entertaining. The Monkees are a show. We get really good solid professional musicians who can knock off the most complicated parts in their sleep. I could learn to do most of what the guitar players do, but I would be constricted, my eyes would be crossed, my tongue would be sticking out.
DAVY: On the stage we’ve got two guitarists and then we’ve got Peter who’s the lead guitarist. You’ve got three people playing and that’s a lot more impressive and it’s like the chorus line… It’s entertaining and it looks better. This is why I like the theater.
MICKY: We do a very theatrical show.
DAVY: Everybody’s saying that now. They are all doing theatrical shows, but nobody else did it better or started before we did.
PETER: But who’s doing it the best now, that is the question!
DAVY: We are doing it best for our audience.
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