This Month's Colgems Upload - Head Soundtrack
Here is the latest Colgems upload, the soundtrack to the counterculture cult flick, "Head," starring the Monkees and a bevy of guest stars.
How do you describe this movie to the uninitiated? Well ...
Hey now wait a minute!
Now wait just a minute!
Hey hey we are the monkees
You know we love to please
A manufactured image
With no philosophies
We hope you like our story
Although there isn't one
That is to say there's many
That way there is more fun
You told us you like action
And games of many kinds
You like to dance, we like to sing
So let's all lose our minds!
We know it doesn't matter,
Cause what you came to see
Is what we'd love to give you,
And give it one, two, three!
But there may come three, two, one, two
Or jump from nine to five,
And when you see the end in sight
The beginning may arrive!
For those who look for meaning,
And form as they do facts,
We might tell you one thing
But we'd only take it back
Not back like in a box back
Not back like in a race,
Not back so we can keep it,
But back in time and space!
You say we're manufactured,
To that we all agree,
So make you choice and we'll rejoice
In never being free!
Hey hey we are the monkees,
We've said it all before
The money's in we're made of tin
We're here to give you more!
The money's in we're made of tin
We're here to give you--
Gimme a w!
Gimme an a!
Gimme an r!!
What does that spell!!??
This is "Ditty Diego War Chant" from the soundtrack to the film, and I guess it best describes what the film is about.
The Monkees, with help from Jack Nicholson, Dennis Hopper, Bob Rafelson, and a host of others, wanted to deconstruct themselves, and with this film, they did just that.
After 58 episodes of the TV show, they were burned out, mentally, physically and musically. The four Monkees--who were relatively unheard of just two years before--were now some of the most recognizeable faces on the planet, and although they had much success, few in the musical community took them seriously.
With "Head," they wanted to explode the Monkees machine, and that they did. Everything created through the TV show was thrown out the window, and the foursome went in so many different directions during this film that the viewer needs a compass to figure out just where they, and the Monkees, are going at any given moment.
But the trip, as it is, is worth, um, the trip.
The soundtrack--which can be accessed at http://launch.groups.yahoo.com/group/albumania/
contains some of the finest music created by the Monkees, along with the likes of King and Goffin and Harry Nilsson, and it set the bar very high for the band.
Peter Tork--who was to leave the group afterwards--particularly shines on this effort, with his "Long Title: Do I Have to Do This All Over Again" particularly brilliant. Why the Monkees powers that be kept his talent in a box is still open to bewilderment more than 40 years after the fact.
But it is "Porpoise Song" that stands out above the rest. It is a psyschedelic chestnut that continues to be savored all these years later, and the tune, credited to King and Goffin but probably written solely by Carole King--pulses with the time, and is shown over a creative sequence where the Monkees are seemingly floating underwater.
The other songs are masterful too, particularly "Circle Sky," Mike Nesmith's opus which was played live in the movie but is featured in a studio version on the soundtrack.
And that is the one buggaboo I have with the entire album: much of the music in the film is not found on the soundtrack. Oh, yes, versions are found on the soundtrack, but where is the live version of "Circle Sky," and where is the extended version--with a break--of "Daddy's Song"?
Anyway, that minor criticism aside, the movie tanked, as did the album, but years later, both have been praised high and low as counterculture highlights of the late 1960s.
And deservedly so. With all the talent involved--the Monkees, Nicholson, Hopper, Rafelson, and guest stars Frank Zappa, Annette Funicello, etc.--the film stands up to the test of time, even though the viewer may scratch his head wondering what is going on.
And the soundtrack is a real gem too.
After this album, the Monkees pretty much were on the scrap heap, but still generated several fine tunes over their last three albums, several singles and a TV special which made "Head" look like "Gone With the Wind."