Former Monkees star looks back on nearly 50 years - and ahead to his Annapolis show

Micky Dolenz is going to be walking down the street soon.

And, he won't be getting the funniest looks from everyone he meets.


Instead, they'll be believers.

Make that 33 West St., 7:30 p.m. on Monday. The 70-years-young rocker will be headlining at Rams Head On Stage for one night only.


It's been nearly 50 years since the child star of "Circus Boy" burst on the TV screen with three other shaggy haired actors in a hysterical, half-hour sitcom about The Monkees, a quartet of fumbling rock musicians with slapstick schtick reminiscent of the Marx Brothers from an earlier era.

Ironically, they became chart topping rock legends. Originally backed by studio musicians and hit songwriters, their creative songwriting and musical talent soon outshone their proxies.

This won't be Dolenz's first visit to Annapolis. He's actually a regular. Relatives of one of his exes live on the water in the Wardour community of West Annapolis. When in town, he does what townies do — adjust his ever-present fedora, kick back and knosh on freshly steamed blue crabs.

His touring solo show is not much different, Dolenz said, from the original Monkees performances. Then as now, he sang the majority of the Monkees' hits.

"I always endeavor to satisfy the audience and give them the hits," he said. "It's that unspoken contract you have with the audience. I went to see Johnny Mathis in concert recently. He was a huge influence on me and he's still pretty good. I hoped he'd do 'Misty,' and he did."

Another influence on his style was the Everly Brothers.

After The Monkees show ended in 1968 and the act broke up in 1971, Dolenz moved to London where, for 12 years, he directed shows and films, and was a writer and producer. In the United States, he appeared in Broadway musicals, and recorded albums and toured with fellow Monkee alum, the late Davy Jones. One daylight show, on a hot August Thursday in 1995, took place in the open courtyard of the World Trade Center.

Ten years ago, he had a brief spin as the morning disc jockey on WCBS-FM in New York.


While living overseas, Dolenz went to London's famed Albert Hall to see Don and Phil Everly's reunion concert.

"I was a huge fan of theirs. I wondered if they were going to do the songs I remembered so well: 'Wake Up Little Susie' and 'Cathy's Clown.' They did the songs as I remembered them. I was standing with the rest of the crowd, tears rolling down my face, cheering.

"I decided to remember this moment. If anyone wanted me to sing a Monkees song, I'll do it. Yes, I know the acts that won't do their hits," he said, noting audience members get restless or walk out in disgust when they don't hear their favorite songs.

"Once you do the hits as they remember them, you can do the other stuff. The non-Monkee songs," he said. "Then, the audience is with you."

Dolenz likes to intersperse his songs with anecdotes. He always tell the story about Chuck Berry's "Johnny Be Good." It was the song he performed when he auditioned for a role on The Monkees.

"It got me the gig," Dolenz said with a grin.


Some of his onstage stories include his friendship with the Beatles. "John Lennon used to say the Monkees were more like the Marx Brothers than the Beatles," he said.

His show includes a five-piece band. Coco Dolenz, one of his three sisters, joins him on some of the vocals.

"It's a good ol' rock 'n roll show," he promised.

He recently released a live album, "A Little Bit Broadway, A Little Bit Rock & Roll (Broadway Records)." Dolenz had performed some gigs in recent years in 54 Below, an underground space that once served as the celebrity-studded VIP room for long-gone Studio 54.

He did a cabaret act composed of Monkee hits and some Broadway songs. He recorded it as a CD album, which is available online:

Looking back, he noted his roots were in show biz. His mother, Janelle Johnson, was a big band singer in the 1940s. She moved to Los Angeles to become a film actress and married George Dolenz, an actor-singer. During his show, he sings songs he heard his parents perform.


Over the years, he's been married three times and has four daughters by his first two marriages. He married Donna Quinter, a former airline stewardess, in 2002. In the aftermath of 9-11, air traffic was grounded. Quinter was stranded in New York City. Dolenz drove cross-country to pick her up. On the return leg, he proposed.

Between gigs, he enjoys woodworking. He has a shop at his California residence. All four daughters work on various projects in the shop. He recently inaugurated a new business with his daughter Georgia called Dolenz & Daughters Fine Furniture ( ). The duo designs and sells modern, hand-crafted pieces. For the recent Christmas holidays, they designed solid mahogany ornament discs with a snowflake stenciled on one side and their logo on the reverse.

With the 50th Anniversary of The Monkees TV debut in September 1966, is anything being planned?

Dolenz sounds coy. "One of my jokes, is, I say, 'I have some pre-natal work coming out on ultrasound'."

Nothing's has been formally announced, he said. "But, we're organizing and talking about it, making plans for a recording and tour. "Peter (Tork) and Mike (Nesmith) and I have talked about a recording for years."

He quickly added: "There's no dates, set lists or recording schedules yet. But. We are talking about it. We're in the middle of discussing that stuff."


That would make Daydream Believers of many of his fans.

For information about the Rams Head On Stage show, visit .