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Monkees Guitarist and Bass Player Peter Tork Dies

Feb 21, 2019  •  Post A Comment

Peter Tork, who struggled to have his music taken seriously for decades after becoming an overnight sensation as a member of the Monkees in the 1960s, has died.

Tork, born Peter Halsten Thorkelson, died Thursday morning at a family home in Mansfield, Conn., according to media reports. He was 77.

Tork reportedly died as a result of adenoid cyctic carcinoma.

A multi-instrumentalist and an accomplished guitar player, Tork’s role in the Monkees was mainly playing the made-for-TV band’s “lovably clueless” bass player.

Following the meteoric success of the Monkees in the late 1960s, Tork concentrated on a number of his own music projects while continuing to sporadically join later Monkees incarnations on reunion tours. An aficionado of the blues, he frequently played smaller venues as frontman of his own bands, including the Peter Tork Project, Shoe Suede Blues and the Dashboard Saints.

Tork’s death follows that of his Monkees bandmate Davy Jones in 2012.

Here’s a clip of Tork, on keyboard and vocals with his band Shoe Suede Blues, performing “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You,” a Neil Diamond song that was recorded by the Monkees in 1967 …


  1. The Monkees belong in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
    So what if they were a TV band.
    They outsold, had more fans, were more iconic and had more hits than many if not most of the acts that are already in the Hall of Fame.

    George Vreeland Hill

    • I’ve got to respectfully disagree, George. The essence of Rock & Roll is the passion to tell your story through music which viscerally appeals to those who can best relate to your message. Despite record sales and fandom, the Monkees were an artificial construct more suitable for TV honors than the R&RHOF.

  2. And I shall respectfully disagree with you, Mangler. They influenced the music industry in many ways and deserve the respect of both the television AND music industries.

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