1986 marked the 20th
anniversary for The Monkees and suddenly a whole new generation suddenly had
Monkee Mania as the “pre-fab” four once again aired on both MTV and
Nickelodeon. Suddenly Super Teen, 16 Magazine, Tiger Beat and many other
popular magazines at the time were filled with not only classic Monkees articles
but new articles as well.
But now with the passing of a
second Monkee, Davy Jones being the first, MeTV will air two Monkees episodes
that feature Peter Tork. Tune in this Sunday, February 24, at 5PM | 4C to
pay tribute to one of our favorite groups.
The two episodes that will are:
Man Shy" – 5PM | 4C
A rich debutante named Valerie books the Monkees to play her
coming-out bash. Awkward Peter immediately falls head-over-heels for her. Just
one problem — the girl's snobby rich suitor goes out of his way to show her why
she should never be with poor Peter. The Monkees cook up their own plot in
retaliation to prove just what a fine fellow Peter truly is. Features the
tunes "Valerie" and "I'm A Believer."
Devil and Peter Tork” – 5:30PM | 4:30PM
This tale is based loosely on Stephen Vincent Benet's fantasy
novel The Devil and Daniel Webster (just like the song "The
Devil Went Down to Georgia"). Peter falls in love with a golden harp in
Mr. Zero's Pawn Shop. Alas, he has no cash to buy it. Zero produces a Faustian
contract, which Peter signs. Micky, Mike and Davy remind Peter that he can't
play the harp. But — poof! — Zero appears in a cloud of smoke and endows
Peter with masterful harp skills. The lads suddenly become a harp act —
and an instant overnight success.
·The Monkees singer Peter Tork died Thursday at the age of 77
·His sister Anne Thorkelson confirmed the news but not the cause
·Tork was diagnosed with rare cancer adenoid cystic carcinoma in
2009 but his regular check-ups showed he was clear in 2012
·He survived by his fourth wife Pam Tork as well as children Ivan
Joseph Iannoli, Hallie Luia Tork, Erica Marie Tork
·Davy Jones, the group's lone Brit, died of a heart attack in
2012 at 66 as they prepared for a reunion tour
·Same year Tork told Daily Mail 'I'm an alcoholic' who was '34
years clean'. 'Once I pick up the first drink, something gets triggered and I
have no resistance'
Monkees bassist-and-singer Peter
Tork died Thursday at the age of 77, his sister Anne Thorkelson has confirmed.
Tork's sibling did not clarify
the suspected cause of his death but in 2009 the musician was diagnosed with a
rare cancer that affected his tongue.
'It is with beyond-heavy and broken hearts that we share the devastating news
that our friend, mentor, teacher, and amazing soul, Peter Tork, has passed from
this world,' a post on his official Facebook page read.
He celebrated his birthday last
Wednesday and survived by his fourth wife Pam Tork as well as children Ivan
Joseph Iannoli, Hallie Luia Tork, Erica Marie Tork.
Pam was there to support Peter six years ago when he battled adenoid cystic
carcinoma – a rare cancer that occurs in the head and neck.
His regular check-ups showed he
was clear in 2012 and they married in 2013.
'When I heard I had this cancer,
I had a bloody good cry, and then it was a case of, "Right what do I do
now?"' he previously told Daily Mail. 'They performed the surgery and I
couldn't talk for about a day or two, but Pam came with me to hold my hand.'
David 'Davy' Jones, the group's lone Brit, died of a heart attack in 2012 at 66
as they prepared for a reunion tour.
The same year Tork admitted he
was an alcoholic.
He told Daily Mail: 'I'm an
alcoholic, and that means once I pick up the first drink, something gets
triggered and I have no resistance, so the answer is to not drink at all. I'm
34 years clean and dry now. I was awful when I was drinking, snarling at
Tork was the oldest member of
the group in 1966 when their NBC show The Monkees first aired, the 24-year-old
helped spark Monkeesmania with an offshoot of merchandise, top-selling music
and tour tickets from the TV hit.
Although it only ran for two
seasons, the Bob Rafelson and Bert Schneider-produced program won an Emmy for
As well as playing bass for the
four-piece - also made up of Jones, Mickey Dolenz, and Mike Nesmith - Tork sang
lead on some of the band's tracks including Long Title: Do I Have To Do This
All Over Again.
He penned the tune for the
four-piece's 1968 movie, Head, which features cameos from the likes of Dennis
Hopper, Frank Zappa and Jack Nicholson who wrote the film allegedly while
tripping on LSD.
The Daydream Believer hitmakers
surged in popularity past the likes of the Beatles and Rolling Stones in 1967
with their album selling 35 million copies, a round double that of their rivals
Titled Monkees, the LP featuring
hits such as I'm a Believer and Last Train to Clarksville, resulted in several
no. 1 singles for the group.
While trained musician Tork also
played keyboards in the group, the Washington DC man was said to be 'mortified'
when he joined and realized they would not actually play their instruments.
The manufactured band had tunes
written by the likes of Carole King, Neil Diamond and Jeff Barry when they
first emerged on the music scene and had used session musicians for their debut
release before Tork had even signed up.
The men had answered an advert
for 'four insane boys aged 17 to 21' to star in a new TV series.
The show became an instant
success with fans including singer-songwriter Tom Petty and John Lennon, who
nicknamed the Monkees 'the Marx Brothers of rock'.
They would go on to have Jimi
Hendrix as a tour support act. But it wasn't enough for Tork who longed to be
taken seriously as a musician.
After the release of their
second album More of the Monkees in 1967, the men fought for more songwriting
and performance control and their third release Headquarters was a reflection
of their chops.
By 1969 Tork had left the Monkees and his venture into a new group called
Release proved unsuccessful in 1970. The Monkees split.
Dolenz told Daily Mail: 'When it
came to Daydream Believer, which was really Davy's song, we told the audience,
"We can't sing this song any more – it belongs to you now," and they
sang it instead.'
Reunion tours in 1997 and 2001
reportedly dissolved into bickering, but there was no real animosity. 'There
were moments of tension,' admitted Peter. 'But the Monkees never promised to
stay together. People forget we started out as the cast of a TV show.'
Trained musicians Tork and
Dolenz were cast as the members of a rock band who found themselves in one
crazy adventure after another as they struggled to make it big.
In 2012 Tork admitted they
smoked substances strong than cigarettes during their height of fame.
Tork found himself in trouble
when he was arrested for possession of hashish and spent three months in prison
'Well, we were young adults in
the ‘60s so there may have been a quick toke before we read our lines, but we
couldn't do our job properly if we were wasted on drugs, so we did work really
hard,' he confessed.
When Tork, Jones and Dolenz toured the US in 2001, Tork quit early, unable, he
said, to put up with 'the drinking and difficult behavior offstage'.
'The truth,' Peter said in 2012,
'is that I'm still confused about my own behavior then and I'm not sure that I
had all my own faculties at the time, sober or not. The drinking itself was not
an issue and if it were, I would not have rejoined them.'
And he'd always found the fame
hard to handle. 'I gave a lot of my money away when I was younger – just left
it in bowls around the house and people would help themselves to handfuls of
it,' he said.
'I wasn't thinking too clearly
at the time and it might have been my low self-esteem, thinking that I didn't
deserve to keep the money, but it wasn't really that bright, was it?' he
laughs. 'I mean, there's nothing wrong with giving money away to people, but
give it where you can do some good.'
As we all know, The Dukes of
Hazzard never aired on Nickelodeon but with Nick’s upcoming 40th
anniversary just around the corner I thought it would be fun to take a look at another
series which also got it’s start in 1979.
·The Dukes of Hazzard first aired on January 26, 1979, as a
filler prime time program until The Incredible Hulk returned to the airwaves.
With only nine episodes were ordered the executives at CBS crossed their
fingers and hoped for the best and they got it! Lasting for a total of seven
seasons the show racked up an impressive 147 episodes the show was a hit and
made house hold names of their new and rising stars. So, let’s take a look at
some facts about the show you may, or may not, have known.
·The show’s original concept was roughly about two brothers who
were at odds with the corrupt law authorities of Hazzard County.
·The series was considered an action-comedy.
·The series was inspired by the 1975 film Moonrunners, which was
also created by Gy Waldron and had many identical or similar character names
·William Paley, CBS chairman, hated the show. Sad but true. Apparently,
the concept of the show just didn’t appeal to him.
General Lee was a 1969 Dodge Charger. (Okay, we all
know that one but still.)
TV cousins John
Schneider and Tom Wopat were certainly popular there was only one character
which out shown them. Who could that star be? The General Lee of course! It seems
that out of the 60,000 fan letters the show received each month about 35,000 of
those letters were to, or rather about, the General Lee.
·Dennis Quaid was considered for the part of Luke Duke but there was one
problem with that. At the time he was married to P.J. Soles whom he wanted to
play the part of Bo and Luke’s cousin Daisy. Unfortunately for Dennis, and
fortunate for us, Soles just didn’t seem to be the right fit for the role and
the rest is history. Tom Wopat was eventually cast as Luke and Catherine Bach as
·John Schneider was only 18 years old when he was cast as
Bo Duke despite the fact that the producers actually wanted someone between the
ages of 24 to 30 years of age. I think the fact that he happened to mention
that he could do some of the stunt driving helped.
·It also turns out that John Schneider wasn’t a good old
country boy as he portrayed in his audition. He was actually a native New Yorker.
·Before being cast as Luke Duke, Tom Wopat was a stage actor and was
flown in to do a screen test with John Schneider.
·John and Tom first met in the men’s room where they began talking about music when Tom’s guitar was spotted under a stall door.
·Worried censors would not allow Catherine’s skimpy jean shorts on
camera it was decided that she would wear a few layers of panty hose in case of
· Former First Lady Nancy Reagan was a Daisy Duke fan. It turns out that Catherine’s
former grade school teacher, Shirley Moore, went on to work in the White House.
After Catherine send her one of her posters, she received a letter back from
her letting her know that Mrs. Reagan was a fan. Not wanting to disappoint her
fans Catherine sent over more posters.
·Remember that there were a few episodes in which James Best, who
played sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane, didn’t appear? There was a reason for that.
Turns out that instead of having a private dressing room to change in after one
of his famous chased with those Duke boys they just hosed him down instead. He
demanded a private dressing room in which to change in and was gone for five
episodes. (Who could blame him?)
·There were also a few episodes in which Ben Jones, who played “Cooter”
the mechanic, is missing as well. Why? Ben thought his character should have a beard
but the executives wanted him to be clean-shaven instead.
·After years of wrecking as many Dodge Chargers as find for their
seventh, and final season, in 1985, the production team chose to turn to a miniature
car for some of their stunts. It wasn’t the wises move the team had made an according
to Tom in an interview he gave to E!, “It was a source of humiliation to all of
us on the show.”
·Believe it or not, Tom Wopat’s hood slide across the General
Lee, the footage showing in the opening credits, was an accident! According to
him the slide has been unintentional and that the first time he tried sliding
across the hood the car’s antenna injured him.
·Did you know there was an animated series? I didn’t, but as it
turns out “The Dukes,” was produced by Hanna-Barbera and aired in 1983. The
series only lasted for twenty episodes so instead of being grounded in Hazzard
County this series traveled the work taking the boys to places like Hong Kong