Monkee Davy Jones dies at 66

The child actor who grew up to be a global pop star as a Monkee has died in Florida. Davy Jones died of a heart attack at the age of 66.

Jones was born in Manchester and by the start of the 1960s had appeared in the popular TV series Coronation Street and Z Cars. He became famous though for a role that was a world removed from the cobbles of Weatherfield.

The Monkees were American TV’s initially cynical attempt to cash in on the phenomenon of Beatlemania by creating a wise-cracking pop group of four mop-tops delivering catchy tunes and sarcastic one-liners in a sitcom format.

The brilliance of the music caught the producers by surprise and The Monkees became genuine pop stars with classic hits like Daydream Believer, Last Train To Clarksville and I’m a Believer, with songwriting provided by the likes of Neil Diamond and Carole King.

Jones was the lone Brit alongside 3 Americans and his northern accent meant that many viewers assumed he was from the same city as the Beatles. He was the best actor of the quartet, but his singing was impressive too, particularly on Daydream Believer.

The Monkees were the highlight of his career, and he was always the most enthusiastic about a reunion. In 2011 he took part in a 45th anniversary tour and remained conspicuously happy to be a Monkee again. "Wherever I go, people still shout out: 'Hey, hey, we're the Monkees!'," he said. "And I never tire of that."

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