Monkees – Monkees Theme

Hey Hey…Let’s all wake up to the Monkees on this quarantined morning. It’s hard to resist this song…it’s fun and reminds me of the intro to their television show…which is a good thing.

This was the first song written and recorded for The Monkees TV series, which ran on NBC 1966-1968. Written to introduce the Monkees and used as the theme song for the show.

It was written by the songwriter/producers Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart, who were hired to write three songs for the show’s pilot, including the theme. When they wrote it, the cast had not been chosen and they had very little direction…the show was pitched as “An American version of The Beatles” and loosely based on the Beatles movie A Hard Day’s Night.

Peter Tork: “I always thought the song worked fine as the theme song for the TV show. But I never allowed us to sing it in public,” “The whole idea of standing up there and singing, ‘We’re wonderful/We’re the wonderful ones/And our names are The Wonderful Ones,’ was too self-congratulatory. What we do now is, the backing band plays [the music] and Micky and I come out onstage to it. I can’t ever see us singing ‘Hey, hey, we’re the Monkees!’ I couldn’t bear it.”

 

From Songfacts

The finger snaps and “here we come” line were influenced by the Dave Clark Five song “Catch Us If You Can,” where they sing, “Here we come again, catch us if you can.”

The Monkees didn’t play on their early albums, so very often the only band member to appear on a song would be its lead vocalist, which in this case was Micky Dolenz. This song was produced by the song’s writers, Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart, who had members of their band, the Candy Store Prophets, play the instruments. The backing credits are as follows:

Micky Dolenz: vocal
Tommy Boyce: backing vocals
Wayne Erwin, Gerry Mcgee & Louie Shelton: guitar
Larry Taylor: bass
Billy Lewis: drums
Gene Estes: percussion

Turns out this song works very well in a documentary about actual monkeys: It was used to open the 2015 Disney film Monkey Kingdom.

The Monkees Theme

Here we come
Walkin’ down the street
We get the funniest looks from
Everyone we meet

Hey, hey, we’re the Monkees
And people say we monkey around
But we’re too busy singing
To put anybody down

We go wherever we want to
Do what we like to do
We don’t have time to get restless
There’s always something new

Hey, hey, we’re the Monkees
And people say we monkey around
But we’re too busy singing
To put anybody down

We’re just tryin’ to be friendly
Come and watch us sing and play
We’re the young generation
And we’ve got something to say, oh

Any time
Or anywhere
Just look over your shoulder
Guess who’ll be standing there?

Hey, hey, we’re the Monkees
And people say we monkey around
But we’re too busy singing
To put anybody down

Whaaa, one time!

Hey, hey, we’re the Monkees
And people say we monkey around
But we’re too busy singing
To put anybody down

We’re just tryin’ to be friendly
Come and watch us sing and play
We’re the young generation
And we’ve got something to say

Hey, hey, we’re the Monkees
Hey, hey, we’re the Monkees

Author: badfinger20 (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

36 thoughts on “Monkees – Monkees Theme”

      1. Are you using Chrome? If you are…there are 3 dots on top of each other in the top right of your browser…click on them…go to history….clear it

        Like

  1. The shows are on MeTV Sundays at 5 PM Eastern, and we never miss them. We saw them when they were first-run, and it’s been so long it’s like they’re brand new. They ended up being a pretty good band…

    Liked by 3 people

      1. I was 8 in 1975 when I first saw the reruns. I didn’t know that they were long gone until a cousin told me….then I heard the Beatles and I was lost.
        I love that song…I live a few miles from Clarksville…wrong one I think.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. While as somebody who believes in music craftsmanship I have somewhat mixed feelings that The Monkees essentially started out as a fake band, I just love many of their songs. Plus, eventually, they became “real” musicians and learned how to play their instruments.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That redeems them somewhat…by the third album they were playing their own insturments. I have to admit something… The reason I wanted to play in a band was because they made it look so much fun! Well it’s not as fun as they show lol.

      After I found the Monkees…I heard the Beatles and I was lost for good. I have to wonder how many kids in a lot of generations they inspired to pick up an instrument? That is one thing they did do…I have to say.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. How strange that Peter Tork had that attitude about singing it in public, after all they were intended to be a fun, mostly tongue-in-cheek group… odd taking it that seriously!

    I have fond memories of The Monkees and this song (and I’m a Believer). 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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