Spotlight On: The Monkees

Backed by a seven piece band, The Monkees recently entertained fans at The Paramount in Huntington, Long Island, confirming that they still have the star quality that put them in the spotlight in the 1960s. Michael Nesmith, Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork opened their set with their ageless hit Last Train to Clarksville with scenes from the television series that started it all showing on a big screen as a backdrop. Other songs featured in the live concert included Papa Gene’s Blues, Your Auntie Grizelda, The Kind of Girl I Could Love, I’m a Believer, Mary, Mary and Sweet Young Thing. The band paid tribute to Davy Jones, who passed away in February 2012, with a soulful rendition of Shades of Grey.

The Monkees started off as a situation comedy aired on NBC between September 1966 and March 1968. Based on the lives of four young men and their adventures as they reached for stardom as a rock ‘n roll band, The Monkees was a hit with the viewing public, and led to the stars of the show becoming a rock ‘n roll band, and when the show came to an end, the band continued recording music for three years before breaking up. The Monkees regrouped and broke up a number of times over subsequent years, and have been back together since 2010. During this time The Monkees produced nine albums and undertook numerous tours, including a British Tour and Pacific Rim Tour. In 2011 they celebrated their 45-year career with a British and North American tour entitled “An Evening with The Monkees: The 45th Anniversary Tour”.

The television show was revived periodically over the years and it was recently announced by NBC that The Monkees will be returning (with a new cast) for 30 episodes, with the one-hour special due to premiere in October 2014.