I was saddened to read today of the death of Davy Jones, one of the Monkees. Jones died of a heart attack at age 66.
When The Monkees TV show first began airing and their songs dominated the airwaves, Davy Jones became the heartthrob of millions of adolescent girls. He was one of the first post-Beatles teen idols. At that time, at least, the role of teen idol carried a certain responsibility — you had to be squeaky clean in your public persona, give mindless interviews about your pet peeves and favorite foods to magazines like Tiger Beat, and pose in the most ridiculous publicity photos imaginable. Jones carried it off with elan, and then he handed off the baton to Bobby Sherman, who handed it off to David Cassidy, who handed it off to some other fresh-faced, inoffensive object of the platonic affections of millions of teenage American girls.
Who cares if Davy Jones wasn’t the world’s greatest singer or the world’s greatest actor? He brought joy and excitement to the lives of many, he was part of a TV show that a lot of us liked at the time, and he managed to be part of some pretty darned good music that helped to define the ’60s. I think Daydream Believer was one his best Monkees tunes, and it seems like a fitting point of remembrance.
Davy Jones, R.I.P.