Music News

The Monkees, Without Davy Jones, Are Coming to Phoenix. Would You See Them?

The Monkees are coming through Mesa -- it's called "A Midsummer's Night with The Monkees" -- which should not surprise anybody who's ever heard an Arizona stereotype. The show's on August 9, at the Mesa Arts Center, and it will (for obvious reasons) not feature the Davy Jones, the group's TV lead singer, who died a little more than a year ago.

Read More: Davy Jones: This Monkee's Going to Heaven

As the post-Beatles generation of rock bands reaches their dotage, this is a question you're going to find yourself asking a lot: Should you go see The Monkees, or bands like them, while you have a chance, even if they're without some founding members?

Sometimes this is more drastic than others -- Lynyrd Skynyrd, for instance, is down to one original member and three who were active before 1999. Other times, as on the Beach Boys' recent reunion tours, the remaining members agree to put aside their differences but are still hamstrung by the loss of central performers and songwriters.

The Monkees have come through the past 50 years pretty well, by comparison; Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork were rejoined by Michael Nesmith after Jones' death, and that's the trio that will play Mesa in August.

But "Daydream Believer" won't sound quite right, and if they're still doing any wacky high jinks or bizarre psychedelic happenings, they won't be quite so wacky or bizarrely psychedelic.

Given a long-enough time horizon, it's become clear that nearly everybody who can re-form something that resembles their original band will do it; few are able to resist the siren-song of the reunion as well as the Beatles, who could only muster the nerve to do "Free as a Bird" and "Real Love" with a recording of John Lennon.

But while the boomer icons make their final final tours of the country, fans everywhere will have to decide whether it's better to have seen as much of the Monkees or the Beach Boys as you could, or to have not seen them at all.

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Dan Moore