Today’s Guest: Today’s Guest: Peter Mills, author, “The Monkees, Head, and the 60s”
Watch this exclusive Mr. Media interview with PETER MILLS by clicking on the video player above!
Mr. Media is recorded live before a studio audience full of teenyboppers daydreaming of meeting Davy Jones in the next life… in the NEW new media capital of the world… St. Petersburg, Florida!
There are some truly horrific movies in the history of cinema.
I didn’t realize until yesterday that one of them starred The Monkees – Davy Jones, Micky Dolenz, Peter Tork and Mike Nesmith.
Head, a 1968 theatrical release starring the pre-fab foursome, represents 85 minutes of my life I will never get back again.
PETER MILLS podcast excerpt: “Even before I started writing the book, I must have seen the film 25 times. Don’t (form an opinion) on watching it one time!”
What astonishes me is that anyone – not even Jack Nicholson, one of the writers responsible for this legendary atrocity — could make the super-charismatic band so uninteresting.
I avoided watching Head for almost 50 years, but finally broke down and watched it — for free, fortunately, on YouTube — because I wanted to understand what drove British music journalist Peter Mills to write an entire book about the band and the movie.
In The Monkees, Head, and the 60s, Mills dissects the band, the film and its soundtrack, adding deep cuts of history to the misbegotten cinematic dud.
I am old enough to have watched and adored “The Monkees” in its original 1966-68 run on NBC. I still have my original Monkees albums – even the one my baby brother took a bite out of.
I even interviewed Micky Dolenz for a newspaper back in 1984, a career highlight for me.
But after this interview, I’m going to try to focus my memories on the TV series and forget I ever saw Head.
PETER MILLS podcast excerpt: “Usually, my students at Leeds Beckett University don’t know who The Monkees are, but every year, there are maybe one or two kids who are already experts on them. A few weeks ago I said Television was the best band to come out of the New York punk scene. A kid came up after class and said, ‘No, I think that Modern Lovers are better.'”
Key interview moments:
• 3:15 Peter Mills, author of The Monkees, Head, and the 60s, talks about how he first discovered the lost film Head by TV’s The Monkees;
• 16:45 If you’ve only seen Head once and didn’t like it, Mills urges you to take another look. And another. And another;
• 28:00 As a teacher of millennials at London’s Leeds Beckett University, Mills doesn’t expects his students to know The Monkees, but a few each term always surprise him.