Davy Jones can’t be dead. Davy Jones can’t have been 66, he still should be running around in unfeasible short swimming trunks looking like a Modish Mowgli.
Davy Jones lived in that corner of my childish mind marked ‘60s Things’. He was there amongst the Willy Wonka psychedelia, the winking Fab Four, the mini-skirted girls with Mary Quant bobs, he was there in his red shirt singing Valleri or talking in his accent that always sounded a bit fake even if he genuinely was ‘British’.
Davy Jones wasn’t even our favourite one but we knew even as children he was an essential cog in the wheel of Monkee fun. Davy was the face of the Monkees. He was the singer of smooshy ballads that paused the hyperactive hi-jinks in the show so some girl could swoon at him. He was the sweet, non threatening alternative to Dolenz and his rubber faced brand of psychosis and Mike’s Eeyore style despair. There was no fear that the show would be detrimentally derailed in a Hunter S. Thompson fashion once Davy was around. He was the small cute one that seemed to spend most of the time being chased around like an errant puppy. He was the precursor to a boy band legacy of fancying/mothering the vulnerable, the seemingly innocent one of the band. In my head he’ll forever be roaming about in his dandyish fashion trying to chat up some girl, giving Russell Brand a template to live out for the rest of his life.
Although he wasn’t just a straight and narrow heart-throb, on one of the more bizarre early Monkees tracks; I’m Gonna Buy Me a Dog Jones seemed to be relishing the role of anarchic twin of Dolenz who manages to outline some pretty fruity lyrics for what ostensibly was a children’s song about ‘man’s best friend’.
He cut loose like the rest of them, tripping through Head like a lost child and coming out the other side as a man willing to poke fun at himself in The Brady Bunch movie.
The Monkees stood for pure unabashed fun, they set the standard for great manufactured pop and the true wonder and brilliance it can create. They physically fizzed with life affirming joy and were many people’s introduction to the idea of a band. Davy Jones had a part in creating all that magic and for this we must salute him.