Michael Nesmith, “Magnolia Simms”


Okay, last one today, I promise! The musical stars must be truly alligned for December 30. It’s also Michael Nesmith’s birthday. I’ve already written a bit about the Monkees here. None of the charges that are commonly leveled at the group apply to him in any way: he was never uncool, he was never inauthentic, he was never untalented. Far from being just a cute, cheeky sit-com star, he is above all a terrific songwriter…if I post a song of his I like on every one of his birthdays, I think I will I have to hire someone to keep doing it on my behalf after I am dead.

I’ll start with this one, though, because I mention it in No Applause as a key example of the vaudeville music revival that happened in the psychedelic sixties. The false starts are part of the intended fun, as is the broken record bit at the end:

To find out more about the variety arts past and present, consult No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famous, available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever nutty books are sold. And don’t miss Chain of Fools: Silent Comedy and Its Legacies from Nickelodeons to Youtube, to be released by Bear Manor Media in 2013.


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