Monkee Micky Dolenz is teaming up with Christopher Cross and Todd Rundgren, former Chicago singer Jason Scheff and Badfinger guitarist Joey Molland for a 50th anniversary, Beatles‘ White Album tribute tour.
Concert insiders say the principals will come on first and do their signature hits.
In the second half of the show, Molland (who was produced by Rundgren) and Scheff will take the stage to perform songs from the album.
Dolenz says 90 percent of the show will be devoted to The Beatles’ classic set.
The double album was titled, officially, The Beatles, but quickly became known as “The While Album,” because of its stark white cover lacked text and graphics.
The group’s ninth studio album was released on Nov. 22 1968. Most of the songs were written during March and April 1968 at a Transcendental Meditation course in Rishikesh, India.
The album is considered “high concept” and experimental, but also yielded such classics “Hey Jude,” “Helter Skelter” and “Revolution.”
The recording session was rife with tension. Ringo Starr even briefly quit the band. It marked the beginning of the end for the band, which finally broke up for good in 1970.
But the album has earned its own place in rock history as a seminal recording.
Dolenz says the tour producers came to him and he jumped at the chance to perform.
“I love The Beatles music … always have and always will,” he said.
During The Beatles heyday, Dolenz was close to both John Lennon and Starr in LA.
“I remember a party I had, and John was there, and all of a sudden, there was Brian Wilson [of the Beach Boys].”
Dolenz says the party moved to his home studio and a jam session ensued. “It was fun, but nothing terrifically musical,” he recalls.
The former Monkee was also in the studio when The Beatles recorded their iconic album Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band, arguably one of the best in rock history.
Rundgren has been a fascinating artist in his own right, since his first group The Nazz, a Philadelphia band he formed with bassist Carson Van Osten in 1967.
“We Gotta Get You A Woman” and his classic-double album Something Anything, made him a huge star.
He was in several editions of Ringo’s All Star Band and produced Badfinger’s Straight Up album … with no less than Beatle George Harrison as the other producer.
“I’m a total Todd-head and my pick for an original would be ‘Black Maria’ from Something Anything … just a classic,” says Dolenz.
The Philadelphia-born artist has produced everyone from Hall & Oates, to Meat Loaf and XTC, with spectacular results.
Badfinger was the first band the Beatles signed to their label Apple in 1968. Members of the group played on the sessions for Lennon’s Imagine and Harrison’s All Things Must Pass albums, according to Rolling Stone.
The group also performed at the “Concert For Bangladesh” with Harrison and Starr.
Cross has been an exemplary artist. His music from the soundtrack of the 1991 movie “Arthur” was nominated for an Academy Award. “Ride Like The Wind” and “Sailing” were both major hits. The five-time Grammy winning artist has performed regularly and has a devoted following.
This is Dolenz’s second high-priority project this year.
The first was his the first-ever teaming with fellow Monkee Michael Nemsith on a worldwide tour last year. The trek was interrupted after Nesmith suffered health issues, but resumed this year.
Before the end of the year expect to see a live-recording via Rhino Records.
Podcaster Trevor Joe Lennon said the he was sure Dolenz would sing the Beatles anthem, “Everyone’s Got Something To Hide Except For Me and My Monkey,” but Dolenz revealed the song was on Todd’s set list.
It has been confirmed however, that Dolenz will be performing “Back in the USSR.”
Following the tour, look for a Dolenz-fronted reprise of his A Little Bit Broadway; A Little Bit Rock ‘n Roll show in New York City.
The White Album tour starts on Sept. 21 in Atlantic City. It is not endorsed or supported by the Beatles.
|It Was 50 Years Ago Today Tour Dates|
Sept 21 – Atlantic City, NJ – Golden Nugget
Sept 28 – Akron, OH – Akron Civic Theatre
Sept 29 – Danville, KY – Norton Center
Oct 1 – St. Charles, IL – Arcada Theater
Oct 2 – Milwaukee, WI – Pabst Theater
Oct 5 – Beverly, MA – Cabot Theater
Oct 6 – Concord, NH – Capitol Center For The Arts
Oct 7 – Orono, ME – Collins Center For The Arts
Oct 8 – Ridgefield, CT – Ridgefield Playhouse
Oct 10 – Staten Island, NY – St. George Theater
Oct 11 – Boston, MA – Berklee PAC
Oct 12 – Westbury, NY – Theatre @ Westbury
Oct 13 – Morristown, NJ – Mayo PAC
Oct 15 – Glenside, PA – Keswick Theatre
Oct 17 – Red Bank, NJ – Count Basie Theater
Oct 18 – New London, CT – Garde Arts Center
Oct 20 – Washington, DC – Warner Theatre
(Additional shows to be announced soon!)