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Monkees tour boycott -- or is Michael Nesmith just monkeying around?

October 03, 2012|By Randy Lewis
  • The Monkees, in a circa 1967 photo, will go on a reunion tour with surviving members Michael Nesmith, Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork.
The Monkees, in a circa 1967 photo, will go on a reunion tour with surviving… (Michael Ochs Archives /…)

With a Monkees reunion tour looming next month, singer, songwriter and guitarist Michael Nesmith has taken to Facebook to head off what he says is a campaign by a contigent of Monkees fans who are threatening to boycott the tour unless actor Kevin Spacey steps in for the late Davy Jones to sing “Daydream Believer.”

Other observers in the music business quickly started reposting Nesmith’s note, several of them deriding misguided fans for suggesting such a campaign. Most comments reacting to Nesmith’s post are also taking it seriously.

But is it a genuine boycott threat or a highly entertaining stunt staged by forces unknown? A Google  search turns up nothing in the way of a fan boycott of the upcoming shows -- other than references to Nesmith’s reaction. The tour opens Nov. 8 in Escondido and includes a Nov. 10 date at the Greek Theatre in L.A.

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Nevertheless, Nesmith’s post has plenty of entertainment value and low-key cultural commentary. He is, after all, a published novelist with the magic realism-inspired 1998 novel “The Long Sandy Hair of Neftoon Zamora” and the producer of the wonderfully wacky 1982 sci-fi time-travel adventure movie “Timerider: The Adventure of Lyle Swann.”

One of Nesmith’s Facebook friends, Erin Wilson, commented, “I'm deeply sorry that so many fans don't get your dry sense of humor. Many of us do, though, and we thank you. Also, please wear sparkly boots.” Nesmith didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

As for the idea of Spacey subbing for Jones, when I sat down last week with Micky Dolenz to talk about his new solo album and the reunion tour, I whimsically asked whether they were considering incorporating the Tupac Shakur image into their show.

Dolenz said he didn’t want to give too much away before the tour started, but did say that he, Nesmith and Tork were coming up with ways to include and salute their fallen band mate.

Whether it’s real, or whether somebody’s just monkeying around, here’s what Nesmith posted on Facebook earlier today, an item that has generated more than 2,500 “likes” and more than 600 comments within the first few hours of it going up:

“OK now this is getting out of hand -- or maybe out of control -- or something.

“Apparently there is a fan group -- Monkees fans -- who have formed a large contingent to boycott the upcoming tour unless and until we invite Kevin Spacey to sing ‘Daydream Believer’ as a tribute to Davy.

“Now, I like Kevin. He is a close friend that calls all the time, at least he says he is Kevin Spacey, and we talk a lot, but there are too many things that are just plain wrong with this, if I may be so bold as to scold.

“First Micky and Peter and I are in rehearsals now and working very hard to put together a great show that includes a solution to what to do about ‘Daydream Believer.’ We have some very good ideas, and we think they will work out well.

“None of them include having Kevin sing, and as good a friend as he is -- he calls all the time, really, like at 3 a.m. and so forth -- I just can't agree to this.

“Yes, I think David would like the Bobby Darin connection, and, yes, Kevin is a good singer, a really fantastic impressionist, but he is waaay too old, and he cannot, as far as I know do the Davy dance. Not that he would ever need to, but I don't think he can do it.

“I mean, he limped a little in ‘Usual Suspects’ -- but that is a very long way from the Davy dance -- a really, very, very long way.

“And now these so-called ‘fans,’ as they call themselves, want to boycott this concert tour unless and until we invite Kevin to sing ‘Daydream Believer’ at the end of the show.

“I am beside myself with worry over this, and don't know what to do. To have such a revolution among people who should know better and who have never even talked to Kevin as I have, sometimes for hours and hours when he was thinking about maybe leaving show biz, just makes me so sad and confused.

“But for you ‘Spacey Cadets,’ as I will now call you disparagingly, Peter and Micky and I have got this whole Daydream Believer thing right at the top of our list of things to bring to the concert in the best and right way. It is important to us, and we don't intend to mess around with this. There are times when the Monkees just have to get serious and this is certainly one of them.

“So, pushing us around, and making the three of us have agonizing conversations in the rehearsal studio, and sometimes during meals, even, is just not helping at all.

“Please stop -- and please do not boycott the shows, and please do not poison anyone else into boycotting the shows. I am asking nicely because I just don't know what else to do.

“These shows are going to be so much fun, and will represent the whole Monkees part of our lives so well, that you just don't want to miss them. (Micky and Peter are sounding better than ever, BTW).”

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