Davy Jones of The Monkees Dead at 66

Davy Jones, the longtime Monkees vocalist, has died of a heart attack in Florida at age 66.

According to TMZ, an official from the medical examiner's office at Martin County, Florida, confirmed that they received a call from Martin Memorial Hospital informing them that Jones had died of a heart attack.

Jones is survived by his wife, Jessica, and four daughters from previous marriages.

Jones was born in Manchester, England, on December 30, 1945. He started a career as a singer and actor at age 11, appearing on the British soap opera Coronation Street as Ena Sharples' grandson, Colin Lomax. He also appeared in the BBC police series Z-Cars. After the death of his mother from emphysema when he was 14, he left acting and trained as a jockey.

The stage quickly called him back, however -- and before he knew it, he was performing a song from the touring company of "Oliver" on The Ed Sullivan Show in February 1964. It was the same Ed Sullivan episode that introduced The Beatles to more than 72 million U.S. viewers.

Jones joined The Monkees in 1965 with Micky Dolenz, Michael Nesmith and Peter Tork. The band's hits include "Daydream Believer," "(I'm Not Your) Steppin' Stone," "Pleasant Valley Sunday," "Last Train to Clarksville" and "I'm a Believer."

The band enjoyed massive chart success while their sitcom -- also called The Monkees -- aired on NBC from September 1966 to March 1968. After its cancellation, the band continued, losing members along the way, until 1970. The band's final recording session, which took place in September 1970, featured Jones and Dolenz, the last remaining members.

The Monkees enjoyed a resurgence of popularity starting in 1986, when MTV ran a marathon of their sitcom, introducing them to a new generation of fans. Seizing the opportunity, the band reformed -- usually without Nesmith -- and toured several times in each successive decade.

Their final tour was in 2011.

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Damian Fanelli
Editor-in-Chief, Guitar World

Damian is Editor-in-Chief of Guitar World magazine. In past lives, he was GW’s managing editor and online managing editor. He's written liner notes for major-label releases, including Stevie Ray Vaughan's 'The Complete Epic Recordings Collection' (Sony Legacy) and has interviewed everyone from Yngwie Malmsteen to Kevin Bacon (with a few memorable Eric Clapton chats thrown into the mix). Damian, a former member of Brooklyn's The Gas House Gorillas, was the sole guitarist in Mister Neutron, a trio that toured the U.S. and released three albums. He now plays in two NYC-area bands.