The “Bad” tour spanned the globe with stops in 15 countries on 4 continents, and included 123 concerts to about 4.4 million loving fans
what am i supposed to love??? briefcases???
Though the Monkees never get any credit for this, they were the first major boyband/teen idol oriented group to overthrow the ‘Powers That Be’/management and fight for control of their career.
Ricky Nelson can probably be given credit as the first teen idol to want control over his music and image, but the Monkees were the first band to assert control over the music they made, and on a much larger scale.
Without doing too much research, here’s a small list of teen idols/boybands that eventually broke free or overthrew their management. I’ll add to it when I get more time:)
-The Monkees (January 1967): It had been brewing for awhile, but the Monkees’ breaking point was seeing the More of the Monkees album in a record store without ever knowing that it was released. They were also upset by the cover, which featured them wearing clothes from JC Penney’s. This lead to a confrontation with their musical supervisor, Don Kirshner. Mike famously punched a hole in the wall at the Beverly Hills Hotel and said “THAT COULD’VE BEEN YOUR FACE MOTHERFUCKER”. Luckily for the Monkees, the creators of their show sided with them and Kirshner was out.
-Jackson Five (1975): Like most Motown artists, the Jackson Five got zero control over what they recorded, weren’t allowed to write songs, and definitely we’re allowed to play on the songs. By the mid-70s, the Jackson Five believed Motown was giving them crap songs and didn’t really care if they were successful anymore, since they were all growing up and out of the teen idol age bracket. This led to a showdown with Berry Gordon (kind of awkward, since Jermaine was married to Gordy’s daughter at the time). They eventually left and went to CBS Records, which upped their 2.8% royalty rate to 20%. Jermaine obviously stayed at Motown. At CBS/Epic, they were eventually able to write and record songs, with Michael Jackson as the main songwriter. This obviously lead to bigger and better things for him, and for CBS, who released all of his solo albums.
-N Sync (2000): Most of N Sync’s first album was written by Max Martin and they had no hand in any of the behind the scenes work. In 1998, N Sync sued their manager Lou Pearlman for bad business practices including defrauding them of 50% of their entire earnings. A huge legal battle ensued and they eventually reached a settlement. Their next album, No Strings Attached, still holds the record for the most albums sold in one week (2.4 million) and allowed them to still utilize their old producers but also saw them co-writing songs and having more input. Their third album, Celebrity was almost entirely co-written and was a good launching pad for Justin Timberlake’s solo career.
Other teen idols that went against their management’s wishes:
-David Cassidy. Famously posed nearly nude on the cover of Rolling Stone and talked about smoking pot and other naughty things in the article at the height of the Partridge Family
Mexican monkees EPs!
Top includes “look out (here comes tomorrow),” “the kind of girl I could love,” “sometime in the morning” and “laugh”