Micky Dolenz sprinkles so many stories through his superb show at 54 Below, you are repeatedly astounded at the decades of history that go with the popular soundtrack of Carole King and Jerry Goffen tunes, as well as mint Monkees, he performs. That is, if you are of a certain age. And even if you aren't -- there was a teen seated front row center among those adorned with silver manes and fedoras last Tuesday -- there are always television reruns of The Monkees for reference. But Dolenz's career also featured Broadway (Aida), just down the block from 54 Below. At 70, he has the chops to do it all.
He did "Don't Be the Bunny" from Urinetown. Prefacing "Some Enchanted Evening" with a story about his father singing "soft" opera around the house in his underwear -- "ooh, gross, dad" -- or a visit with his daughter and excursion to the ice skating rink where fans swarmed him before launching into "Mr. Cellophane" from Chicago. Other highlights of this entertaining evening: "Pleasant Valley Sunday," "Daydream Believer," "Last Train to Clarksville" and "I'm a Believer." He mock hates that audiences sing along, and sing along we did.
For "Randy Scouse Git," Dolenz explained how this, his own composition, goes by a different title in Britain. It has some off-color meaning in Liverpool. His girlfriend Donna was in New York on 9/11, and could not get out. Dolenz drove cross-country to rescue her, and married her the following year. Arriving at Abbey Road studios in his signature hippie fringe back in the day, John Lennon greeted him, "Hey Monkee Man." Now for this weekend's last performances, he's just in jeans, t-shirt, and slim jacket and hat, for a vibrant trip down memory lane.
A version of this post also appears on Gossip Central.