Changes (The Monkees album)

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Changes
Studio album by The Monkees
Released June 1970
Recorded Late 1969/Early 1970
Genre Pop rock[1]
Label Colgems (original US release)
RCA (Japan)
Rhino (1986 LP reissue + 1994 CD reissue)
Producer Micky Dolenz, Davy Jones, Tommy Boyce, Bobby Hart, Bill Chadwick, Jeff Barry
The Monkees chronology
The Monkees Present
(1969)
Changes
(1970)
Barrel Full of Monkees
(1971)
Singles from Changes
  1. "Oh My My" / "I Love You Better"
    Released: April 1970
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars [1]

Changes is the ninth studio album by The Monkees. The album was issued after Michael Nesmith's exit from the band, leaving only Micky Dolenz and Davy Jones to fulfill the recording contract they signed in the mid-1960s. Changes was their last new album for Colgems Records and the last album by the group until 1987's Pool It.

History[edit]

The album's title had originally been considered for the Monkees' movie (released in 1968), and a song with that title (cowritten by Jones with Steve Pitts) had been recorded. The movie was retitled Head, however, and the song was shelved, remaining unreleased until the 1990s.

Changes reunited Jones and Dolenz with producer Jeff Barry, who now had his own successful record label, Steed Records. As with the earliest Monkees recordings, Jones and Dolenz only provided their vocals, while the backing tracks were provided by session musicians. Barry plucked his own produced outtake of his composition "99 Pounds" from the final Don Kirshner-supervised Monkees sessions in January 1967 that also yielded the hit single "A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You"; while "Midnight Train" was recorded during sessions for The Monkees Present and had been featured in CBS-TV reruns of the The Monkees television show (most notably in "The Chaperone").

"Oh My My" became the first single from the album and made the Top 100 in the Billboard charts; written by Jeff Barry and Andy Kim, it is unrelated to the later 1973 Ringo Starr single of the same name. Besides being the opening track and lead-off single from the album, "Oh My My" was also accompanied by a rare promo film directed by Micky Dolenz, showing Micky and Davy Jones riding their motorcycles and horses. "Acapulco Sun" was released as a single in Mexico, becoming a minor hit there.

Changes appeared in June 1970 and initially failed to make the charts. Consequently, its initial pressing was limited (COS-119) and has become one of the more valuable Monkees albums. Jones announced shortly after its release that he was resuming his solo career (amidst an industry joke that either he or Dolenz would leave The Monkees and the remaining member would record the next album as "The Monkee"), but he and Dolenz would release one more single together before reuniting in 1976 with Monkees songwriters and producers Boyce and Hart. In the wake of the success of the Monkees' television show being rebroadcast on Saturday mornings by CBS (in which all but two tracks from Changes were featured in the reruns), the duo recorded "Do It In The Name Of Love" and "Lady Jane" in September 1970. Instead of appearing under the "Monkees" name on Colgems Records, however, the single was released on Bell Records, the successor label to Colgems, and credited to "Mickey Dolenz (sic) and Davy Jones". This was due to the prohibitive costs of licensing the Monkees name in the US; however, in several other countries, the record was issued under the name The Monkees.

Two tracks recorded during the sessions — "Ride Baby Ride," a complete mystery with no credits nor tapes available for review and "Which Way (Do You Want It)," a song which was replaced by "Midnight Train" — were left off the LP and are now lost outtakes. Another track, "Time and Time Again", was dropped in favor of "I Never Thought It Peculiar" but later surfaced on the Monkees rarities collection Missing Links and subsequently (in remixed form) as a bonus track on the 1995 CD release of Changes.

Another song, "Steam Engine," was recorded in 1969 for Changes and was written and produced by Chip Douglas, featuring Micky Dolenz on vocals. This song was not released at the time due to a disagreement between Screen Gems and Douglas over session costs and only saw the light of day via the Monkees' TV series episode "Monkees on Tour." In 1979, it was finally issued on the semi-official Australian compilation album Monkeemania - 40 Timeless Hits, and in 1982 it was issued in the USA on the Rhino Records picture disc Monkee Business.

Changes was reissued in December 1986 by Rhino Records (RNLP-70148), as were all of the original Monkees albums that year, and made a belated entry into the Billboard album charts, reaching #152. The Rhino vinyl reissue was mastered from a vinyl copy of the album, the master tape having been lost over the years. For the 1994 CD reissue on Rhino, a first-generation master tape was found at the Screen Gems publishing division, and used for the CD reissue.

Jones has stated that Changes is his least favorite Monkees effort, going so far as to comment in the CD version's liner notes: "That was Jeff Barry and Andy Kim doing an Andy Kim album," adding that he had terrible memories of the recording sessions. Dolenz, while not lavishing praise on Changes, said that he was pleased to be invited to record new material. "I was quite happy to do it as long as somebody wanted to record me. It was simple as that." Dolenz added "by that time, it was pretty obvious that The Monkees were over. Davy and I were still getting along, but we were mainly fulfilling a contractual obligation to a record company — that's what Changes is all about".[2]

Track listing[edit]

Original 1970 Colgems vinyl issue[edit]

Side 1
  1. "Oh My My" (Jeff Barry, Andy Kim) - 3:02
  2. "Ticket on a Ferry Ride" (Barry, Bobby Bloom) - 3:30
  3. "You're So Good to Me" (Barry, Bloom) - 2:34
  4. "It's Got to Be Love" (Neil Goldberg) - 2:25
  5. "Acapulco Sun" (Ned Albright, Steven Soles) - 2:54
  6. "99 Pounds" (Barry) - 2:29
Side 2
  1. "Tell Me Love" (Barry) - 2:38
  2. "Do You Feel It Too?" (Barry, Kim) - 2:37
  3. "I Love You Better" (Barry, Kim) - 2:28
  4. "All Alone in the Dark" (Albright, Soles) - 2:52
  5. "Midnight Train" (Micky Dolenz) - 2:07
  6. "I Never Thought It Peculiar" (Tommy Boyce, Bobby Hart) - 2:29

All tracks except "You're So Good to Me" and "It's Got to Be Love" were featured on the CBS reruns of The Monkees from 1970–1972.

1994 Rhino CD reissue[edit]

Tracks 1-12: Original album

  1. "Time and Time Again" (Davy Jones, Bill Chadwick) - 2:40
  2. "Do It in the Name of Love" (Bloom, Goldberg) - 2:08
  3. "Lady Jane" (Bloom, Goldberg) - 2:45

Session information[edit]

January 21, 1967

"99 Pounds"

July 16, 1969

"Midnight Train"

October 28, 1966 and September 12, 1969

"I Never Thought It Particular"

August 14 and November 11, 1969

"Time and Time Again"

  • Recorded at RCA Victor Studios, Hollywood
  • Produced by Bill Chadwick and Davy Jones
February 5, 1970

"Oh My My," "Tell Me Love," "I Love You Better"

  • Recorded in New York City
  • Produced by Jeff Barry
  • Engineered by Mike Moran
March 25, 1970

"Ticket on a Ferry Ride," "You're So Good to Me"

  • Recorded in New York City
  • Produced by Jeff Barry
  • Engineered by Mike Moran
March 26, 1970

"Do You Feel It Too?," "All Alone in the Dark"

  • Recorded in New York City
  • Produced by Jeff Barry
  • Engineered by Mike Moran
April 2, 1970

"It's Got to Be Love," "Acapulco Sun"

  • Recorded in New York City
  • Produced by Jeff Barry
  • Engineered by Mike Moran
September 22, 1970

"Do It in the Name of Love," "Lady Jane"

  • Recorded in New York City
  • Produced by Jeff Barry

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b http://www.allmusic.com/album/r13305
  2. ^ Liner notes for 1995 Rhino CD release of Changes