UPDATE 2/29/12: Today at The Second Disc, we join music fans all over the world in mourning the loss of Davy Jones, who died this morning at the age of 66. The worlds of music, stage and screen all lost an icon with the passing of the actor, singer, comedian and beloved Monkee. Davy brought a little of the British Invasion to the California band, as well as lot of talent, sweetness, heart and chutzpah.
New York DJ Cousin Brucie Morrow took the airwaves on Sirius/XM satellite radio early this evening to celebrate Jones’ life even as an outpouring of affection arrived on Twitter and Facebook. Peter Noone, a.k.a. Herman of Herman’s Hermits, told Morrow that his friend Davy was “the Danny Kaye of rock and roll” and an all-around entertainer: “A great English working class guy” despite his great success. Lou Christie concurred, describing Jones as a “great entertainer,” while Tommy James praised his longtime friend’s “great mind,” remembering just how much “fun [it was] to be with [him].”
We’re remembering Davy today by re-posting this August 1, 2011 announcement of Jones’ recently-reissued solo debut. Friday Music has promised that Jones’ 1971 Bell Records LP (containing the hit “Rainy Jane”) will soon be on the way, joining a spate of Monkees releases from the Rhino label including box sets dedicated to The Birds, The Bees and The Monkees, Head, and Instant Replay. Please join us in recognizing the legacy of Davy Jones by leaving your own memories below in our comments area. Rest in peace, Mr. Jones.
It’s the return of the artist formerly known as David Jones! No, not Mr. Bowie, but rather Davy Jones of The Monkees, who recently hit the road with his old bandmates for a successful tour. Way back in March, we passed on hints from Friday Music that a reissue of Jones’ 1965 Colpix Records solo album was in the cards. Now, the label has confirmed to Monkees.net that David Jones: The Deluxe Edition will hit stores on September 27, containing the original LP plus two rare single bonus tracks.
While David Jones is an artifact of the singer’s pre-Monkees career, Jones had already been a ten-plus year veteran of the business we call show when he recorded the album! He began his career in his native England on programs such as the famed soap opera Coronation Street, which still runs today. Shortly after that stint, Jones was cast in the West End production of Lionel Bart’s much-honored musical Oliver!. It wasn’t long before Jones was being dispatched to America. Oliver! was making its American premiere under the auspices of legendary producer David Merrick on a pre-Broadway tour of Los Angeles, San Francisco, Detroit and Toronto. Michael Goodman was originally cast in the role of the Artful Dodger, and when Merrick made the decision to record the show’s Broadway Cast Album in Los Angeles, Goodman preserved his performance. (The score had proven so popular from the London incarnation that the producer didn’t wish to lose any more sales to the London Cast Album.) However, Goodman wasn’t working out, and Merrick replaced him with the then-David Jones. So while Jones didn’t get the chance to immortalize his “Consider Yourself,” “I’d Do Anything” and more, he did receive a Tony Award nomination for his work in the musical which opened on January 6, 1963.
Little did Jones know what would happen next! Hit the jump to find out! And you’ll also find a track listing with discographical information!
Jones performed with the company of Oliver! on The Ed Sullivan Show on the evening of February 9, 1964, the same night The Beatles made their famous first appearance. That performance was special in a number of ways. Not only did Jones “[see] the girls going crazy, and I said to myself, this is it, I want a piece of that,” but he was spotted by producer Ward Sylvester of Screen Gems Television, who signed Jones to a contract that included recording for Screen Gems’ Colpix division.
David Jones was recorded in Los Angeles where the young actor and singer was starring in David Merrick’s production of the musical Pickwick, directed by Oliver! alumnus Peter Coe. In an ironic turn of events, it was Jones who this time didn’t make it to Broadway with the musical; Roy Castle was playing the role of Sam Weller by the time the show opened on October 4, 1965. Pickwick didn’t repeat the massive success of Oliver!, however, and it shuttered after a mere 56 performances, not even leaving a Broadway Cast Album behind. (It did, however, introduce the now-standard “If I Ruled the World.”)
Produced in association with Rhino, Friday’s reissue of David Jones will include the singles “Take Me To Paradise” (the flip of the album’s “Dream Girl”) and “The Girl From Chelsea” (the A-side of the track “Theme For A New Love”). The album’s material is choice, too, provided by songwriters and producers including David Gates, Carole King and Gerry Goffin and Bob Dylan.
Friday Music’s Joe Reagoso noted to Monkees.net, “I had the good fortune of seeing The Monkees in Atlantic City last month, and I was talking with Davy about the CD after the gig. As we were discussing various aspects of the release, he reminded me ‘Dream Girl’ was No. 1 in Australia! And I noted to him that this particular song, and its wonderful B-side were really ‘early northern soul’ kind of tunes, and he smiled. Along the lines of American soul groups like The Shirelles, Little Anthony and The Imperials, The Drifters, etc., Davy obviously dug soul music early, and as seen in later Monkees releases, this R&B vibe shows itself on tunes like ‘A Man Without A Dream,’ ‘She Hangs Out,’ etc.” As with Friday’s recent Monkees reissues, the original artwork will be included.
Friday Music’s first-ever CD release of David Jones will hit stores on September 27! A pre-order link isn’t yet available.
David Jones, David Jones: The Deluxe Edition (Colpix LP CP-493 – reissued Friday Music, 2011)
- What Are We Going to Do?
- Maybe It’s Because I’m a Londoner
- Put Me Amongst the Girls
- Any Old Iron
- Theme For a New Love
- It Ain’t Me, Babe
- Face Up to It
- Dream Girl
- Baby, It’s Me
- My Dad
- This Bouquet
- Take Me to Paradise (Colpix single 764, 1965)
- The Girl From Chelsea (Colpix single 789, 1965)