Monday, June 27, 2011

On my turntable (Monkees edition): The Monkees Present

It's been quite a while since I listened to this album from start to finish. It's very good.

The original intent for the LP was that it be a double (24 songs), with each Monkee taking one full side. It was a great idea, that is until Peter left the band. The Monkees Present was ultimately trimmed down to twelve tracks, four per Monkee.
In my opinion, Present is the last real Monkees album until Pool It! (1987).  

The Monkees Present is a very honest and mature offering from the trio, with each Monkee contributing as a songwriter and producer. Micky's contributions are particularly strong, showing overt influences of jazz and blues. Davy sticks to what he does best on the songs he wrote ("If I Knew" & "French Song"), while Mike continues with his innovative rock-country fusion.

It's worth noting that Present was the only Monkees album to generate two singles in the U.S. - "Good Clean Fun" and "Listen to the Band" (which I think was technically the b-side to "Someday Man", but known by most fans as the "hit").
Sticker from '86 Rhino re-issue
As a fan I can sort of appreciate that I didn't hear Present until 1986 when it was re-issued by Rhino. It was "new" Monkee music to me at that point, guaranteeing that my memories of this record get firmly planted in the summer of '86 when Monkeemania was riding its second wave.

From '86-96 Rhino continued to rescue, repackage and re-issue new and previously issued/unheard music by the band. The incredible amount of material recorded by The Monkees between 1966-70 has allowed them to be the band that just keeps on giving.

 Up next: Changes...

1 comment:

scottroberts said...

Pretty sure that Listen To The Band was the a-side. Someday Man actually violated the stipulation that every song released by the Monkees be published by Screen Gems. That was enough to knock down All Of My Toys as a potential single two years earlier. By the time of The Monkees Present, Screen Gems didn't much care anymore.