When I originally wrote this section of the website in 2001, it was inspired by a show on MTV called "MTV Cribs Presents: How to Live Like a Rock Star". This show documented the spending habits of the biggest stars of the day. It showed the Backstreet Boys, N Sync, Limp Bizkit, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Korn, Metallica and discussed their tours, where they live, what they buy with their millions, what they wear, who they date, how they party, and all of that. And in the typical MTV fashion of glorifying people and things that don't need to be glorified, they made it appear that these particular rock stars were the first and only rock stars to be extravagant and live in big houses, drive nice cars, and party with the best of them. Of course, we all know better. Ironically, many of the stars they showcased in that Cribs special back in 2001 are no longer rich, nor famous, nor sane (re: Spears, Britney). So I guess living large does take a toll, right?
The 1960s was the real birth of the rock and roll lifestyle that many of today's stars are EMULATING. In this show, MTV practically claimed that the Backstreet Boys were the first band to have their own plane. Yeah right! The Beatles, The Dave Clark Five, Led Zeppelin, and even our dear Monkees had their own planes before the Backstreet Boys were even born.
Compared to today's rock stars, however, the rock stars of the 60s were less extravagant, and seemed to place less value on material possessions. Keep in mind that in the 60s, the whole counterculture movement that many rock stars fell into was not about what houses or cars you had, or if you had gold-plated faucets on your sinks (like Master P does, for example). So compared to the rock stars today, the stars of the 60s were LESS materialistic. But that doesn't mean that they were totally organic. The rock stars of the 1960s bought their share of mansions, expensive one of a kind cars, designer Nehru jackets, and dated the best girls.
The Monkees' rise to fame was swift and huge, leaving the four boys with millions to spend. And spend they did. Along with the Beatles, Elvis, The Rolling Stones, and The Mamas and the Papas, The Monkees were the biggest earners in the late 60s, which means that like those aforementioned bands, they were the biggest spenders. While compared to today's rock stars, Peter Tork, Davy Jones, and Micky Dolenz were tight with their money, Mike Nesmith could be considered the Master P of his day. That's right, our very own Mike Nesmith; the poor kid from Texas, spent money like it was going out of style, buying three houses, seven cars, and much, much more in a single YEAR. He was definitely one of the 60s biggest spenders.
I will divide this section up the same way MTV did, and the main focus will be to compare and contrast the rock stars mentioned in their show on how to be a rock star, and how the Monkees acted like rock stars before any of the current rock stars were even alive.
What venues they played, where in the world they played, what fancy hotels they stayed at (and how many fans showed up when they did stay in hotels), how they got to each concert, who they were hanging out with during the tours and such. Today's rock stars, for example, mainly tour by tour bus and stay at only the top of the line hotels. Also, when they discussed the Backstreet Boys, MTV seemed to think that they were the only band in history that had thousands of screaming girls hanging around their hotel. NOT QUITE...
Where the Monkees lived; take a tour inside the homes of Davy Jones and Mike Nesmith. Back then, if you lived in LA and you were a rock star, you lived in the Hollywood Hills. Today's rock stars have homes that are worth millions, and we'll find out how the Monkees' homes compared.
>> Peter Tork's Infamous Homes
What the Monkees used to drive. Mike definitely had a weakness for cars, but the rest were pretty minimal with their car needs. Their cars are all pretty cheap compared to the ones that rock stars buy today...let me tell you.
Currently, porn stars are the musicians girl of choice, as the MTV show described. In the 60s, however, the ideal chick for a rock star was a model, and preferrably a British model. See what kind of girls The Monkees (who were the most elligible men in 1967) dated.
What kind of clothes they wore (were they big on designer gear?) and what other stuff they bought.