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Monday, September 12, 2016

On This Date (1966) - The Monkees Make Their TV Debut

On this date in 1966 The Monkees debuted on TV. Here are 10 facts about The Monkees - individually known as Davy Jones, Mickey Dolenz, Michael Nesmith, and Peter Tork.
  1. Davy Jones and Mickey Dolentz were actors: Michael Nesmith and Peter Tork were musicians. But the Monkees never played their own instruments until later in their career.
  2. Carole King, Neil Sedaka, Paul Williams, and Harry Nilson are among the songwriters who wrote hits for the Monkees, who were created to capitalize on the popularity of the Beatles.
  3. Stephen Stills auditioned for the Monkees, but didn't get the job. He suggested auditioning to his friend, Peter Tork. Despite an urban legend, Charles Manson didn't audition for the show, but "Monster Mash" singer Bobby "Boris" Pickett and Three Dog Night's Danny Hutton did.
  4. In all, 437 actors and musicians tried out for the 4 parts.
  5. In their first season on TV, each Monkee earned $450 per episode.
  6. 58 total episodes were made for the show which lasted until 1968.
  7. Frank Zappa, who was a big fan of the oft-criticized group, and Tim Buckley both appeared on the show.
  8. As a child, Dolenz starred in the TV series "Circus Boy." Davey Jones was in the musical "Oliver." Mike Nesmith wrote "Different Drum," recorded by Linda Ronstadt and the Stone Ponies. Peter Tork can play 12 instruments.
  9. Jimi Hendrix opened for The Monkees on their 1967 Tour until he was removed from the bill.
  10. The Nesmiths are quite a multi-talented family.  Mike's mother invented White Out, which netted her $47 million, and Mike himself is given much credit for initiating MTV.

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