Monday, July 13, 2015

Music Love: "Look Out (Here Comes Tomorrow)" by The Monkees

I love music just as much as, if not more than, I love movies, but for some reason, I don’t talk about that much here. The other day, as I was writing, I had music on and one of the songs I’ve really been digging lately came on. “Why don’t I do some blog posts about the songs I love?” I thought to myself. And hence this series was born.

For my first entry, I present you with The Monkees’ “Look Out (Here Comes Tomorrow).”

I’ve always loved The Monkees. When I was a kid, my brothers and I watched the reruns of their show all the time. Just like there were four of them, there were four of us in our little family, so we each chose a Monkee to represent us. I was Davy Jones; my brother Mike was Mike Nesmith; my brother Ken (a blond) was Peter Tork; and Mickey Dolenz was assigned to my mom because he was the only one left over. Davy Jones was one of my very first crushes. I was devastated when he died a few years ago.

The Monkees are often written off because they were a “manufactured” band. One could even reasonably describe them as a “boy band.” However, they were all talented musicians in their own right before being cast on the show. The producers assigned pretty much all of them to play different instruments than what they normally played, so they had to learn new ones. Jones, for example, was an accomplished drummer, but he virtually never played drums when he was with the Monkees. They wrote a lot of their own songs, especially Nesmith (he also wrote my favorite Linda Ronstadt song, “Different Drum”). All of them could sing. There’s seriously not a weak singer in the bunch. They used each singer differently and, in my opinion, correctly. They definitely knew what they were doing.

I’ve been loving “Look Out (Here Comes Tomorrow),” written by Neil Diamond, for a lot of reasons. One, I love Davy’s vocals. He sings this one with more of an edge than normal. Two, I’m a sucker for uptempo, happy-on-the-surface songs that are actually unhappy at the core (see: The Pogues’ “Fairytale of New York”). And three, I think it’s funny. This guy’s whole problem is that he’s got the hots for two women. Truly an issue for the ages!

As to what’s going on in the video, I couldn’t tell you. It’s a clip from the show, but it’s not an episode I recall. I have no idea why there’s a guy tied up in it, or why The Monkees are singing about a love triangle at what appears to a child’s birthday party. The dancing kids are pretty priceless though! I learned everything I know about 1960s dance moves from this show and from the old “Batman” TV show.


Patricia said...

Duuuude I love the Monkees too! And I love that each person in your family was assigned a Monkee. You are a total Davy Jones.

I used to watch the reruns also and I too, have no memory of this one. But was a great song. It totally sounds like a Neil Diamond song, once I hit that part in your post, I thought, "Yep. Neil all the way."

I think they would have kept creating great music if the suits would have left them alone, but alas, they did not and the players got grumpy and jaded.

balyien said...

Last year I watched a few episodes on YouTube (I think they may have been pulled down since) and I think it's held up remarkably well. There's certainly a strong element of silliness to it - I'm sure that's why I liked it as a kid - but there's also a lot of very quiet, snarky humor. Dolenz in particular is quite funny. Speaking of Dolenz, did I ever tell you that his official Twitter followed my official Twitter? I thought for sure I'd get dropped as soon as I followed him back (happens a lot) but we still currently follow each other and I'm so ridiculously thrilled by this, even though I'm 99.9% sure a PR person runs his account.