As a kid in the mid 80's, summer meant one thing to me, MONKEES reruns on Channel 56. To say that I was obsessed may have been an understatement. My 7th grade teacher even told my parents that if I applied myself to school as much as I did to the Monkees, I would go very far in life.
I was 12 and had "No Time" for what the other kids were deeming important: Duran Duran, Madonna and the like. My heart belonged to the Monkees and the Beatles. Clearly, I was a child of the 60's trapped in the 80's. I had posters like this one:
plastered all over my wall. I bought reissues of Tiger Beat and Teen Beat magazine. Hell, I even published my own Monkees fanzine (with all of the work done by yours truly.) I had a few subscribers (offering it for free and paid for with my newspaper route money) and one customer who insisted on paying for a subscription (Thanks, Uncle Joe!)
In the Summer of 1986, The Monkees (sans Mike) announced a 20 year reunion tour. I begged my parents to buy tickets. They obliged and bought two tickets for my Mom and I to go to the South Shore Music Circus. Then, I got sick. Very sick. I don't remember what was wrong with me but I spent a few weeks in bed and had to take one of the worst pink medicines I've ever had in my life (I still gag when I think of it.) My Mom took a friend to the concert while I stayed home sick in bed and very upset. I had missed my chance. Or so I had thought.
The Monkees toured again in the New England area several times over the next couple of years and I saw them every time they came to town. My entire family went to (then) Foxboro Stadium to see what looked like dots in the middle of the field perform. I screamed my heart out for Micky (my favorite) and silently prayed that Mike Nesmith would be helicoptered in.
My Mom also took my sister and I to an all day concert in Rhode Island where Chuck Berry, not Mike Nesmith, was dropped from the sky via a helicopter. The three of us also braved the winter weather and drove more than four hours to Bangor, Maine to see the Monkees, Herman's Hermits and the Grass Roots. I remember driving along the highway with a Monkees tape (probably Headquarters) blasting from the speakers looking out at the snow along the highway. My Mom was amazing for taking us so far. She was also a huge Monkees fan as a kid.
Some time went by and I was given two chances to meet my idols. The first came with the publication of this book:
My Mom and I along with several thousand women stood in line for HOURS at Fanueil Hall Marketplace in Boston, MA waiting to see Davy Jones. We were one of the last in line at the event. It wasn't until I got inside the building that I decided to check my camera. I had the film, but no batteries. I had spent more than six hours in line (I think it was actually closer to nine) and I waited until the last possible minute to check my camera. Little did I know that what was about to happen didn't need to be captured on film as the memory is still firmly implanted in my brain all these years later.
I made my way to where Davy was standing signing autographs for folks. He graciously signed my book. I don't remember what he said to me or what I said to him other than, "Can I please have a kiss?" (Remember, I was now 13.) Well, something happened and one of us turned the wrong way and instead of a kiss on the cheek, I got one full on the lips! Move over Marcia Brady! Mom said I walked out of there on Cloud 9.
A short time after that, Micky Dolenz, along with the Monkee mobile, showed up at some sort of Car Expo in Boston. Mom took my sister and I to meet him. This time I made sure that my camera had both film AND batteries! We posed for pictures with the Monkee mobile (I have them somewhere and will try to dig them out.) When it came time to meet Micky, he asked my Mother her name. She said, "I'm Kelly and Erin's Mother." He said, "Hi Kelly and Erin's Mother." That's all I remember from that meeting other than he made us laugh a lot.
Flash forward to 2012 where I'm 37 years old and a Mom myself. Davy's book is sitting on the shelf in front of me. It's been a sad 24 hours for Monkees fans everywhere. Sure, I'll have my memories and we all have the music but it feels like a little bit of my childhood died yesterday. Thank you, Davy, for making our lives a little brighter.
2 years ago