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  • Posts

    • dicey eye
      Peter Tork, Court Jester of the Monkees, Is Dead at 77 The Monkees in a scene from their television show, from left: Mike Nesmith, Micky Dolenz, Davy Jones and Peter Tork. The Monkees were an unabashedly manufactured band, and Mr. Tork was positioned as the goofy one.CreditBettmann/Getty Images The Monkees in a scene from their television show, from left: Mike Nesmith, Micky Dolenz, Davy Jones and Peter Tork. The Monkees were an unabashedly manufactured band, and Mr. Tork was positioned as the goofy one.CreditCreditBettmann/Getty Images By Anita Gates Feb. 21, 2019 Peter Tork, a struggling musician who became an overnight teenage idol in the 1960s with the Monkees, died on Thursday at a family home in eastern Connecticut. He was 77. His son, Ivan Iannoli, said the cause was complications from a rare form of cancer that was first diagnosed in 2009. Mr. Tork, who grew up in Connecticut, lived in Mansfield, east of Hartford, according to The Hartford Courant. The Monkees were an unabashedly manufactured band, created by Hollywood producers in the 1960s to capitalize on the astounding popularity of the Beatles. The members — Mr. Tork (the oldest, at 24), Davy Jones, Micky Dolenz and Mike Nesmith — were cast as the stars of an NBC sitcom, “The Monkees” (1966-68), in which they performed and dealt with comic situations with a childlike irreverence, much as the Beatles had in their hit films “A Hard Day’s Night” and “Help!” The Monkees during the height of their popularity in the 1960s: from left, Mr. Nesmith, Mr. Tork, Mr. Jones and Mr. Dolenz. Among their hits were “Last Train to Clarksville,” “Daydream Believer” and “Pleasant Valley Sunday.”Creditvia Reuters The Monkees during the height of their popularity in the 1960s: from left, Mr. Nesmith, Mr. Tork, Mr. Jones and Mr. Dolenz. Among their hits were “Last Train to Clarksville,” “Daydream Believer” and “Pleasant Valley Sunday.”Creditvia Reuters Mr. Tork was positioned as the goofy one, the court jester. The director Bob Rafelson, one of the show’s creators, compared him to Harpo Marx. Because they were created for television, did not write their own songs (that was left to professionals like Gerry Goffin, Carole King and others) and did not play their own instruments (they mimed playing on camera), the Monkees were disdained by many; if the Beatles were the Fab Four, the Monkees quickly earned the derisive nickname the Prefab Four. But they surprised many in the music industry, and perhaps themselves as well, when they became popular both on television and on the charts. Their show won the Emmy Award for outstanding comedy series in 1967, and the band’s many hit records — including “Last Train to Clarksville,” “Daydream Believer,” “Pleasant Valley Sunday” and the infectious if simplistic “(Theme From) The Monkees” (“Hey, hey, we’re the Monkees / And people say we Monkee around … ”) — for a while earned them sales on the same stratospheric level as the Beatles’. Sign up for Breaking News   Both Mr. Tork and Mr. Nesmith were accomplished musicians — Mr. Tork played several instruments — and Mr. Dolenz and Mr. Jones were seasoned singers. (As a child, Mr. Jones had played the Artful Dodger in “Oliver!” on Broadway.) But because studio musicians did the playing on the first two Monkees albums, the notion that they were not a real band persisted. That began to change in 1967, when the group released what came to be considered its signature album, “Headquarters,” on which they played most of the instruments themselves and wrote several of the songs. Mr. Tork co-wrote some of them, and he shared lead vocals with Mr. Jones on the wistful ballad “Shades of Gray.” (Peter Tork vocals were a rarity on Monkees albums — he was by far the group’s weakest singer — but he had some memorable ones, often laced with humor, beginning with “Your Auntie Grizelda” on the band’s second album, “More of the Monkees.”)   "Your Auntie Grizelda"CreditCreditVideo by Paulo Silva The Monkees recorded for only three years before disbanding; their popularity faded after their TV show was canceled, and Mr. Tork left the band in 1969. But the group enjoyed a revival in the 1980s and reunited for numerous concerts and tours, although usually without Mr. Nesmith. Mr. Tork recorded his first solo album, “Stranger Things Have Happened,” in 1994. He later formed a blues band, Shoe Suede Blues, with which he continued to perform and record until recently. The band’s latest album, “Relax Your Mind,” was released last year. “The blues is about community,” Mr. Tork told The Courant, explaining his genre switch. “Not about how lonely I am, but everybody’s been lonely.” Peter Halsten Thorkelson was born on Feb. 13, 1942, in Washington, the son of Halsten John Thorkelson, an economics professor, and Virginia Hope (Straus) Thorkelson. The family moved to Connecticut, where Peter graduated from high school in Storrs. He attended Carleton College in Minnesota, but left before graduating and moved to New York, where he performed in folk clubs in Greenwich Village and met another up-and-coming musician, Stephen Stills. In California, where both had relocated, Mr. Stills tried out for the Monkees. When that didn’t work out — some sources say Mr. Stills was rejected because he had bad teeth; Mr. Stills himself said that he rejected the job because he wanted to write songs for the show but that would have meant surrendering his music publishing — he recommended Mr. Tork, because people had always told the two that they looked alike. Mr. Tork left show business shortly after leaving the Monkees and at one point taught high school in Santa Monica, Calif. There were financial problems, and personal ones as well; he dealt with alcoholism and drug abuse, and served a short prison sentence for hashish possession in 1972. Mr. Dolenz, left, and Mr. Tork with the Monkees at Town Hall in New York in 2016. Reprinted from the New York Times - February 21, 2019  
    • dicey eye
      Good deal! Maybe an option to Cambodia.
    • JohnOBohn
      I checked with  the Vietnamese Consulate recently in Battambang for long stay visas.      One day application and approval.    One yer multiple entry visa.    Renewable within the country.    $200  USD per year.\       I ask specifically about American citizens.      Conditions/requirements for other nationalities may differ.
    • John_Galt
      Their population here is definitely growing. 
    • andy
      New Chinese run jails for 10 years start period. Pay and better conditions. Aimed at the upper class prisoners
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