The Monkees weren’t just all teenybopper fare. After the TV show ended they worked hard to prove their mettle and to show the world they were more than just a manufactured band.
One of their more unusual offerings was a feature film called HEAD.
Head, a surreal psychedelic feature film, along the lines of Magical Mystery Tour, was a collaboration between The Monkees and Bob Rafelson. It was written and produced by Rafelson and Jack Nicholson, and included appearances by Jack Nicholson, Teri Garr, Carol Doda, Annette Funicello, Frank Zappa, Sonny Liston and Toni Basil, among others. Supposedly, Rafelson and Nicholson were arrested at the NYC premiere on when they tried to attach a HEAD sticker to a mounted police officer’s helmet.
It opened in October 1968 and tanked at the box office, although the songs in it are considered some of The Monkees best and writers included Goffin-King, Jack Nicholson, and Harry Nilsson (Coconut and Without You).
Below, one of the many trailers for the movie:
A cowboy scene with Teri Garr:
A Frank Zappa cameo:
Footnote: Harry Nilsson was John Lennon’s drinking and drug buddy during his so-called lost weekend when he was briefly separated from Yoko Ono and was co-habitating with May Pang in L.A. Nilsson is also the writer/singer of on the best love songs ever, one that Paul McCartney called the most killer song of all time: