Thursday, January 19, 2023

Peter Tork once called Davy Jones the “best natural musician” of all the Monkees

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The monkeys Performers each had their unique talents. All four actors on the NBC television series brought different levels of expertise in both music and acting. However, Peter Tork suggested that out of him, Micky Dolenz and Mike Nesmith, Davy Jones was the “best natural musician” of them all.

Jones played the Artful Dodger in it Olivier!, set in London’s West End in 1960, based on the novel by Oliver Twist. The singer and actor followed the show to New York City when it made its Broadway debut in 1963.

Jones was subsequently nominated for a Tony Award for Lead Actor in a Musical Category. Jones’ rousing signature number in Oliver! was called “Look at yourself”.

February 9, 1964, the day the Beatles made their American television debut The Ed Sullivan Show, 19-year-old Jones quietly waited in the wings to perform on the same stage. He would make his American television debut with the cast of Oliver! this evening. A YouTube clip of his performance shows the cast performing “I’d Do Anything” on stage Sullivan Stage.

However, Jones fell in love with the musical group sporting identical hairstyles and suits. “I watched the Beatles from the side of the stage,” Jones recalled, as reported by Playbill. “I saw the girls going crazy, and I was like, ‘This is it; I want some of that.’” Two years later, he achieved the same success as the Fab Four.

In an interview with Guitar World, Tork called him monkeys Co-star and bandmate the “best natural musician”. That compliment came after a discussion in the play about Tork’s many musical abilities, which include guitar, bass, keyboards, banjo, and other instruments.

Tork said, “The best naturalist of the bunch was Davy. He never hit a bad note. My tone isn’t so sure, and Mickey’s isn’t so sure. Mike is, but he doesn’t have the emotional range that Davy had.”

He continued to praise Jones’ talents. “Davy could sing Broadway, ballads and rock. He could do anything. What I am among these guys is the most educated, the only one who could read and write music.”

Peter shared a story about the music for the song “Shades of Gray” in which Michael wrote the horn and cello parts to the song that appeared on The Monkees’ album headquarters. The band members orchestrated the melody by Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil.

“He wrote it in his head, he sang it to me and I wrote it down and I wrote it down for French horn. I’m the only one of the four who had this information. I studied piano and a pair of french horns for six years, plus music theory in college,” Tork explained.

“Mike is extraordinarily rigorous on pitch and beat. And he has imagination and he’s a very hard worker. I’m not. The only thing that speaks for me is that I’m trained,” he said dryly.

Tork also praised Dolenz for his skills as a pop singer. He told Guitar World, “Micky is one of the better pop singers of all time. I once told him, ‘You must be one of the top 20 pop singers of all time.’ He said: ’20?’ I said, ‘Okay, 15.’ He said: ’15?’ I said, ‘OK, 10, but that’s my best offer.’

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