Peter's Infamous house in the Hollywood Hills
Peter's first big purchase after the Monkees became rich was to buy a house in the Hollywood Hills. He had previously been living with Mike and Phyllis Nesmith. When looking for his perfect bachelor pad, he had in mind "Hills and cool green", which is what he got. His place was the smallest of all of the Monkee mansions, and for most of 1967, he lived there with Joey Richards and Stephen Stills of the Buffalo Springfield. Inside, the house was mainly orange (Peter's favorite color), with huge picture windows and danish furniture. I guess that kind of stuff was cool in the 60s. The kitchen was orange with paper flowers on the wall. On the walls was a poster from Stephen Stills that depicted a man and a woman with the word "Love" on it. Davy Jones printed the word "LOVE" on all of the walls with his stamps.
Anyway, along with Mama Cass' house and David Crosby's house, Peter's house was considered one of the biggest party houses in Laurel Canyon. Any day of the week you could always find famous folks hanging around. Besides living with Stephen Stills, Peter also had famous visitors. Dave Clark stopped by when he came to America, Jimi Hendrix stayed over, as did many other cool folks.
However, by the end of 1967, Peter decided that he needed a bigger house, because his house was too full with people! By the end of the year, his place had turned into a full on COMMUNE. Anyone could drop by and live there for awhile. Besides Joey and Stephen, Peter's housemates also included Karen and Justin Hammer (Lady and Lady's Baby) and Karen's husband Bobby. To accomodate his growing entourage, Peter made a big splurge and bought a new house ....
Peter's second LARGER infamous house in the Hollywood Hills: 3615 Shady Oak Road
(Crosby, Stills, & Nash rehearsing at Shady Oak after Stephen Stills moved in).
Peter's second home is the stuff that legends are made of. This is his legendary NAKED POOL PARTY house. He needed a much larger house for all of his parties, so in early 1968, he found a house for sale that had been owned by comedian Wally Cox, in Studio City. At the time, he could have paid for it in cash, but he was advised against it. So he took out a huge loan and spent his cash on recorating it. The house itself was 14 rooms, with a sauna, a wet bar, a film room, and a fifty foot pool.
In his master bedroom, the bed was eight feet by eight feet with a foam mattress six inches thick. He had a four person bathtub put in the master bathroom, along with his sauna. Mexican tiles were put in the bathrooms, the rest of the house had plush, red carpeting. His house had an uninterupted view of the San Fernando Valley, and the living room had six by nine foot picture windows. The film room had sandblasted natural wood, and the screen covered the entire wall. Just down the hall and across a bridge was another wing of the house. The cabana was downstairs, leading to the pool. Since there weren't any pesky neighbors to worry about, the pool parties usually were skinny dipping events.
Linda Jones (Davy's first wife) explains: "Whenever we would go over to Peter's house, generally, by the pool, naturally, there were a lot of unclothed people. And since we had our clothes on all of the time, we felt out of place." Not only that, but people often dived into the pool naked from Peter's bathroom window. Peter explains: "I'd rather have nude swimming. It's much easier. There's a certain charge to bodies if they're covered up, and if you remove that, it takes a lot of that extra energy out of things." What a sex god.
Like his previous residence, his Studio City place became a hippie haven and a haven for celebrities. When in town to promote Yellow Submarine, George Harrison and Ringo Starr dropped by. The Hollies were personal guests of Peter's when they came to town, as was The Who. Stephen Stills was always there hanging out, as was Buddy Miles, John Sebastian, and members of the Buffalo Springfield. Like most houses of debauchery, Tork's second house has quite a reputation.
Jackson Browne hung out at Tork's house during 1968: "These beautiful chicks from Peter Tork's house kept coming over with these big bowls of fruit and dope and shit. They'd fuck us in the pool. We'd wake up and see this beautiful sixteen year old flower child who knew how to say 'fave rave' with a bowl of fruit. She'd get you incredibly high and then take you downstairs to go swimming."
Doug Trevor, of the Australian group The Cherokees, also remembers Tork's house: "There were stoned hippies laying all over the place, naked girls wandering in and out of the pool and the constant noise of Peter rehearsing his new band Release somewhere downstairs. Barry McGuire ("Eve of Destruction") and his chick were living in an old VW Combi in the back yard. Peter found a room for me in the attic and the first night I tried to sleep in it I was kept awake by this loud drunk roaring in the kitchen all night. They told me in the morning that it was Jim Morrison."
An excerpt from David Crosby's autobiography
Another excerpt from Crosby's autobiography, an anecdote by Salli Sachsi
Before they played Woodstock and did concerts, Crosby, Stills, and Nash used Tork's house for rehearsals. Once, when Stephen Stills got mad at his bandmates, he plugged his guitar outside and wailed, the guitar echoing throughout the canyon, angering all of the neighbors.
Peter's generosity for his friends and leeches got the best of him, and once he bought himself out of the Monkees contract, he sold his infamous house to Stephen Stills and moved into the downstairs of David Crosby's house.
Read STEPH WALLER'S Shady Oak Stories
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