Mickey Dolenz sues to see FBI files
Micky Dolenz is taking legal action to gain access to FBI files about The Monkees.
The 77-year-old drummer-and-singer - the group's last surviving member - has filed a lawsuit in the US District Court for the District of Columbia seeking full access to the bureau's documents on the band after attempts to secure the records via the Freedom of Information Act were allegedly ignored.
Documents obtained by the New York Post newspaper describe the group as a "renowned and beloved rock band" and state: “This lawsuit is designed to obtain any records the FBI created and/or possesses on the Monkees as well as its individual members."
The FBI's website confirmed there are two files on the 'I'm A Believer' group, including one that is "redacted entirely".
The second file was a memo from a Los Angeles Field Office from 1967, which was released in heavily-redacted form in 2011.
Under a misspelt subject header 'THE MONKEYS', the file stated the organisation had looked into “four young men who dress as ‘beatnik types'” who “sang as a ‘combo.'”
An unnamed informant told how the group had "subliminal messages" hidden in their life performances which “constituted ‘left-wing intervention of a political nature.’
The file added: “These messages and pictures were flashed of riots, in Berkley, anti-US messages on the war in Vietnam, racial riots in Selma, Alabama, and similar messages which had received unfavorable response from the audience."
There was no mention of further action.
Mickey's lawyer friend, Mark Zaid, told Rolling Stone has pal had no idea the redacted document even existed until he suggested on a whim that they see if the FBI had a file on the group.
Mark added: "[The redacted file] just kind of reinforced for me that there was actually something here.
“It’s not just a fishing expedition. I mean, we’re still fishing, but we know there’s fish in the water."
But Mark acknowledged the completely redacted file "may be peripheral" to The Monkees.
He added: “Theoretically, anything could be in those files. We have no idea what records even exist. It could be almost nothing. But we’ll see soon enough.”
The lawyer noted the 'Last Train to Clarksville' group - which also included Peter Tork, Davy Jones and Michael Nesmith - had anti-war sentiments in their songs and at the time, the FBI was "infamous for monitoring the counterculture, whether they committed unlawful actions or not."
As well as expedited copies of the withheld files "in their entirety", the lawsuit seeks reasonable costs, fees, and relief.