Friday, March 11, 2011

Micky Dolenz at Warner Park 8-29-10 Concert Review

Micky Dolenz, singer/drummer/songwriter of The Monkees, put on an excellent concert that featured his sister Coco on vocals and Keith Allison on guitar.

Micky Dolenz performed at Warner Park in Woodland Hills on Sunday, August 29, 2010. This was the final concert in the Concerts on the Green series for 2010. This series is put on by The Valley Cultural Center.

The concert started just before 6 p.m., with a short opening set by Wooley & Godwin. They did mostly covers, like "Three Little Birds" and "Penny Lane," and one original tune titled "Sadie." Micky Dolenz took the stage at approximately 6:50 p.m.

"That Was Then, This Is Now"

The band came out first, and did a short instrumental version of "Theme From The Monkees." When Micky stepped out, they went into "That Was Then, This Is Now," which is a song The Monkees started performing in the 1980s. It was included on a greatest hits compilations called, Then & Now: The Best Of The Monkees (that album also included their version of "Kicks").

The band went straight into "A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You," a song written by Neil Diamond. And then into "She" and "Words" and the pretty "Sometime In The Morning," one right after the other. But after those first few songs, Micky added stories and lots of stage banter between songs.

"Last Train To Clarksville"

Before "Last Train To Clarksville," Micky talked about living on Reseda Blvd. (which is fairly close to Warner Park) when he went on the audition for The Monkees. He introduced the song by saying, "Here's the one that started it all." What was really wonderful was that Micky played acoustic guitar on this song, as well as several other songs.

Chuck Berry and Jimi Hendrix

One of the surprises in the set was "Johnny B. Goode," the Chuck Berry song. But the song's inclusion in the set list makes sense, as Micky explained, "This is the song that got me the gig. This was my audition piece." He was referring, of course, to his audition for the television program The Monkees.

Micky talked about how Jimi Hendrix opened for The Monkees on their first tour. This is an old story, but it seemed a surprising number of audience members weren't aware of this. Micky then played Jimi Hendix's "Purple Haze."

New Micky Dolenz CD

Micky Dolenz has recorded a new album, titled King For A Day, in which he covers Carole King songs. From this upcoming release, he played "Crying In The Rain," a song originally recorded by The Everly Brothers. (King For A Day is scheduled to be released Tuesday, August 31, 2010.)

Micky's sister Coco sang lead on two songs. The first was a song written by Michael Nesmith called "Different Drum," which of course was a giant hit for The Stone Poneys. The second song Coco sang was Jefferson Airplane's "White Rabbit." Coco has an amazing voice. She can belt out a song like nobody's business.

Between Coco's two turns at lead vocals, Micky sang "(I'm Not Your) Steppin' Stone" and "Goin' Down." "Goin' Down" was one of the highlights of the concert. It's a seriously fun song, with rapid-fire vocal delivery by Micky. And this rendition was phenomenal.

After covering The Beatles' "Oh! Darling," Micky tossed the towel he'd been using into the audience. He followed that by throwing out some T-shirts. Predictably, the crowd surged forward, stepping over each other for a chance to grab a free shirt.

Keith Allison

Micky then introduced Keith Allison, who is known for performing on Where The Action Is and with Paul Revere And The Raiders. Keith played electric guitar and sang lead on two songs: "Kicks" and "Just Like Me." After those two songs, he stayed on stage, playing electric guitar and singing backing vocals for the rest of the set.

Toward the end of the set, Micky sang "Daydream Believer," a song that David Jones sang lead on in The Monkees. Micky lowered the microphone to his knees at the beginning of the song, joking that he was adjusting it for Davy's height.

He then ended the show with three high-energy, crowd-pleasing songs: "Pleasant Valley Sunday" (a seriously excellent version), "Gimme Some Lovin'," and "I'm A Believer."

Set List
  1. Theme From The Monkees
  2. That Was Then, This Is Now >
  3. A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You >
  4. She >
  5. Words
  6. Sometime In The Morning
  7. Last Train To Clarksville
  8. Johnny B. Goode
  9. Purple Haze
  10. Crying In The Rain
  11. Different Drum
  12. (I'm Not Your) Steppin' Stone
  13. Goin' Down
  14. White Rabbit
  15. Oh! Darling
  16. Kicks
  17. Just Like Me
  18. Daydream Believer
  19. Pleasant Valley Sunday
  20. Gimme Some Lovin'
  21. I'm A Believer
  22. For Pete's Sake
There was no encore. That is, the band never left the stage. Micky Dolenz and his sister Coco took their bows while the band performed an instrumental version of "For Pete's Sake," the song that played over the closing credits during the second season of The Monkees.

This concert wrapped up the 2010 Concerts On The Green season.

(Note: I originally posted this review on August 30, 2010 on another site that has since disappeared.)

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