Mickey Dolenz (Drummer/Actor) - The Monkees
 
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Updated: 11/23/2007

Name: Micky Dolenz

Birth Name: George Michael Dolenz Jr.

Born: March 8, 1945 in Los Angeles, California

Claim To Fame: If you know the name Micky Dolenz then you most likely know him as the drummer from singing group/TV series, 'The Monkees.'

Family Life: Donna Quinter (20 September 2002 - present)
Trina Dow (1977 - 1991) (divorced) 3 daughters
Samantha Juste (12 July 1968 - 1975) (divorced) 1 daughter

Father of actress Ami Dolenz.
Son of actor George Dolenz

Info: When chosen for the role of The Monkees' drummer, he signed up for daily drum lessons in order to fake playing them well enough for the cameras. When being able to actually play became crucial to the Monkees project, he had gotten to the point where he could carry off a stage show, but playing drums and holding tempo proved difficult in the recording studio. He played drums on every track of their "Headquarters" album, but gladly relinquished the role to studio drummers for their later albums.

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Trivia: Mickey owned the third Moog Synthesizer ever commercially sold (the first two belonged to Wendy Carlos and Buck Owens); his performance on The Monkees song "Daily Nightly" (written by Michael Nesmith) was the first use of a synthesizer on a rock recording. He eventually sold his instrument to Bobby Sherman.

Received his draft notice for the U.S. Army in 1967 (as did Davy Jones); despite medical grounds for deferment (trouble with Perthese disease since childhood left him with one leg shorter than the other), Dolenz was told, "Don't worry, we'll only make you fight on hillsides."  He was eventually excused from military service for being underweight, when he went for his physical (Jones was also excused, as his family's only source of support).

Dolenz and first wife Samantha Juste became famous for their large, sometimes wild house parties with lots of celebrities attending; Dolenz' occasional excesses with alcohol and drugs (during his early '70s career slump) was a factor in their marriage breaking up, as she wanted their daughter Ami Dolenz to have a stable home life.

Played the drums using a left-handed setup (bass drum on the left, hi-hat and snare drum on the right) even though he is right-handed. He wore a wig during the first season of "The Monkees" (1966). His hair was naturally wavy and did not fit the image of the other three Monkees, which was straight. He would wet his hair down before each day of shooting and put on a mop-top, straight-haired wig. When The Monkees assumed a free-form image during the second season, he stopped wearing the wig, and sported the "Afro" look.

Fared best of all The Monkees when it came to their royalty payments. While Peter Tork gave most of his money away, Davy Jones lost most of his in bad investments and Michael Nesmith spent his on family luxuries and artistic projects, Dolenz trusted his mother Janelle to handle his money, which she invested carefully in "safe" stocks and holdings.

The song "Hey Mickey" by Toni Basil in the '80s was about the only "Mickey" she knew--Dolenz. Toni choreographed The Monkees' movie Head (1968) and was in the movie dancing with Davy Jones in the harem scene. She went on to appear in Easy Rider (1969) (which involved Jack Nicholson and Bert Schneider, who were a big part of "Head").

Born in the same hospital as Liza Minnelli, Natalie Cole, and Desi Arnaz Jr.

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Where Are They Now: After the Monkees television show, Micky continued his acting career and also did voiceover work for some animated series.

In 1977, Micky flew to London to star in Harry Nilsson's West End Musical, "The Point." He planned to stay three months but remained for 12 years. During that time, Micky honed his behind-the-camera skills (which he first practiced by directing episodes of "The Monkees") by becoming prominent producer-director for the BBC and London Weekend Television. He also directed a feature film, "The Box," written by Micheal Palin and Terry Jones of Monty Python, and helmed numerous music videos.

"I had the best of both worlds," he explains. "It was great to have the opportunity to work in two very different forms of the same medium, the commercial and the non-commercial, and fuse the best of each into something unique…a new style, a new approach."

When Micky returned to the U.S., he continued his directing career with projects for the Disney Channel and Harmony Pictures, among others.

In 1986, MTV broadcast episodes of The Monkees show and exposed a whole new generation to Monkeemania. Micky and Peter Tork recorded new tracks for Arista Records and the single, "That Was Then, This Is Now," became their first Top 20 record since 1968. Micky, Peter and Davy Jones subsequently reunited for a 1986 summer tour that was so successful it sparked the reissue of all The Monkees' classic LPs as well as Pool It on Rhino Records. At one point in 1987, there were seven Monkees albums on Billboard's Top 200 LP's Chart.

In 1996, The Monkees again joined together this time for a "30 Year Reunion" summer tour around America. The response was such that they toured again the following year, this time finishing up in England.

In 2003 he went on tour with Elton John's "Aida".

Then in 2004 he hit Broadway with "Aida"

Was a morning drive radio host on New York Oldies Station WCBS-FM 101.1 in 2005.

More recently Micky has spent more time behind the camera, including directing.

In June 2006, Dolenz played Charlemagne at the Goodspeed Opera House for the revival of the musical "Pippin" in East Haddam, Connecticut. As of January 2007, he was touring in that role.

In a September 2006 radio interview, Dolenz reported that he is the current voice of Snuggle the Fabric Softener Bear.[3] He appeared in Rob Zombie's Halloween remake as Derek Allan, the owner of the gun shop where Dr. Loomis (played by Malcolm McDowell) buys a gun in his search for Michael Myers. In April 25, 2007, Dolenz was featured on American Idol on the Idol Gives Back episode when the show filmed celebrities singing and dancing to "Stayin' Alive" by the Bee Gees.

Right now he is touring With His Sister Coco:
12/17/07 - Potawatomi Bingo Casino, Milwaukee, WI

01/26/08 - Star Plaza Theatre, Merrillville, IN

03/01/08 - American Music Theatrem, Lancaster, PA 17602

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Write To Micky Dolenz:
Micky Dolenz
c/o Staff Member
Grant Management
1158 26th Street #414
Santa Monica, CA 90403

Official Website: www.mickydolenz.com





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