I have been pleasantly surprised by the amount of media coverage of the death of Davy Jones. Obviously I expected the sad news to be reported, but there has been wall-to-wall coverage, news programmes playing the many Monkees hits and even an hour long phone-in on Radio Five this morning.
Losing someone who brings back childhood memories always leaves you bereft (I still haven’t got over the death of Mr Pastry) but it is somehow more acute in Davy’s case because he was a contemporary, or pretty close to it.
The Monkees were the first pop group that really interested me, although I must confess that the music was almost incidental to the anarchic comedy of the tv series that probably influenced me more.
I went as far as collecting the Monkees fanzines and wish now that I’d kept them, not because they might be worth something, but just for nostalgia’s sake.
I related more to Mike Nesmith’s laid back character, but there were vague stirrings of patriotism that the lead singer was English. More than English, he was from Manchester and a Manchester United fan like me.
I do recall Davy playing Ena Sharples’ grandson in Coronation Street as pictured above. This was typecasting as he was born in Openshaw and went to school on Varna Street where earlier generations of my family had lived when they worked in the heavy industries in the area.
(Trivia: Varna Street is named after the Bulgarian seaport that was the main British military and naval base during the Crimean War.)
A sad day and I’ll leave it with one of my Monkees favourites: