Tuesday, June 03, 2014

The Monkees, June 2, 2014 @ MN Zoo Ampitheater

The Monkees are currently on their fourth tour since 2011. Last night the band returned to the Minnesota Zoo to perform their first concert at the venue since Davy Jones's passing in February, 2012. As I was experiencing the show, I came to a realization: The Monkees have evolved from a television show about an imaginary band, into possibly the ultimate reality show about a very real band.

This theory hit me as Peter, Micky, and Michael were singing Davy's signature hit, "Daydream Believer" while a now iconic 60's clip of the song rolled behind them. The juxtaposition of the "then & now" made me think about how real and organic the past few years have been. The surviving Monkees have managed to share the process of grieving the loss of Jones with their fans. In addition, with the advent of social media, fans can experience tour season virtually in real time, be it through Peter's posts on facebook, Micky on twitter, or Nez on instagram. It's an exciting time to be a fan of a band that has been connecting with fans for close to 50 years.
The Monkees in concert, 6.2.2014
In 1997 Nesmith scripted and directed an all new Monkees special, through which the band revealed that, although the show went off the air in '68, they supposedly never stopped making episodes of the series. Indeed, real life is not far from this fictional premise. For those of us who have paid attention, the adventures of The Monkees have continued to evolve and unfold, and we're all a part of the action. I challenge you to identify any other band that is doing this, let alone for nearly five decades.

Had The Monkees truly called it quits in 1970, their legacy would have been cemented in rock history. In my opinion, however, a good chunk of the band's relevance has continued to blossom since their mammoth 1986 reunion. Here's hoping they keep this train rolling for a long time to come.