Saturday, May 4, 2013

Critiquing the Average Peter Tork Interview

Here's an example of what I mean when I complain about the TERRIBLE interviews that get printed lately.

It's an article based on an interview with PT, yet seems to gravitate towards everything else other than the top 3 items of newsworthiess:
A)Monkees on tour again
B)Peter's history with the Monkees
C)Peter's Blues career & new album

Reading the article, the main points (according to space given) seem to be about
A)Monkees new tour & links to performances
B)Peter's History (with other famous people)
E)Social Media

Read it for yourself:

WASHINGTON - When the three surviving members of The Monkees play Warner Theatre in their summer tour, it will be the latest homecoming for Peter Tork. Tickets went on sale Friday for the July 21 show at the Warner Theatre. The 24-date tour kicks off July 15.

Tork will perform locally before the Monkees reunion show. Tork's solo show "In This Generation: My Life In The Monkees And More" comes to Alexandria's Birchmere May 21, and Annapolis's Ram's Head On Stage May 26. "It'll be solo acoustic versions of songs I've done through the years -- Monkees songs, folk songs, stories of the people I knew, how I got to where I was going from where I was," Tork says.Tork, whose real name is Peter Halsten Thorkelson, was born in Washington, D.C. in 1942.
Tork auditioned for "The Monkees" television show in 1965 at the suggestion of his friend, musician Stephen Stills. He says his TV role, as what he calls "the lovable dummy," was cultivated as a defense mechanism during his earlier days as a solo folk artist in Greenwich Village.
"Us Village cats and kitties, back in the early days you'd heard Jim McGuinn (of The Byrds, who later called himself Roger McGuinn) singing 'Michael Row The Boat Ashore,'" Tork says.

The Monkees tour will include original members Micky Dolenz and Michael Nesmith. Davy Jones died in February 2012.
During last year's tour in the months after Jones died, the Monkees shows largely paid tribute to him.
"With a year gone by, things do settle down a little bit, but Davy is very much part of our history and very much still on our minds," says Tork. "We'll be making reference or mention to Davy all through the show."

Last year's tour was the first American tour including guitarist/songwriter Michael Nesmith since Nesmith left the group in 1970.
When asked if he's surprised that Nesmith is again interested in touring with the band he worked so hard to distance himself from, Tork says no.
"Michael has always been his own man," says Tork. "He's come and gone. And if he says 'I'll do it this time and let's see about next year when next year comes,' and he says, 'Let's do it again,' I say 'Great.'"

Tork's latest solo recording with his band, Peter Tork and Shoe Suede Blues, is entitled "Step by Step."  "There's something enveloping and welcoming about the blues," says Tork. "It's actually therapeutic."

Tork credits the television show with providing the band enough time to eventually learn how to play together.  In today's digital music world, which enables musicians to produce and distribute music without the support of a record company, "If you took the four of us and say 'Now do it on social media,' I don't think anything would have come of it."

"3 Surviving Members"?  What, like life is a war and Davy has succumbed?

I do love that he gets to discuss the Village Scene of the early 1960's (now THERE's a book I'd love to read!  Or write.)

Alright, Peter, enough with the folk scene.  Will you be acknowledging the huge hole that is left by Davy's absence?  And what is Mike Nesmith REALLY like?

What do you spend the rest of your time on? Blues . . . oh, um, that's nice.  We'll give you 2 lines about the new album and how Blues has changed your life . . . What, you are aware of Social Media?!?!?!!!! WOW!  Let's include that!!!

PS I personally disagree with his last statement.  I believe he's taking the viewpoint of assembling the 4  personalities (when they were in their early 20's yet in today's world), granted, they would not have enough cohesion to manage a campaign.  But they were supported by a huge marketing/production machine-as are many groups now.  One Direction comes to mind.  I also doubt that they would have succeeded if they had all randomly met and sworn a blood oath to become an "organic band" in the 1960's.  

One thing I am certain of, if they decided to do an innovative Social Media campaign, that they could break new ground.  Currently, they are following the industry standards and are just barely keeping up.  Tork is still making the OLD argument that they CAN PLAY together as a band.  Fans don't care anymore.  Fans want to be engaged, not just in terms of the tours, but also the Meet & Greets.  Social Media can extend this one piece-"Time" is no longer a limited, finite resource.

More ideas on this later.     

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