TMZ has confirmed with a spokesman for the singer that Davy Jones has died of a heart attack this morning at a hospital in Marin Country, Florida. He was 66.
Born in Manchester, England in 1945, Mr. Jones started his career as an actor and singer at a young age, including playing the role of the Artful Dodger in the original Broadway production of the popular musical Oliver!, for which he was nominated for a Tony Award. Interestingly, he appeared along with the cast of the musical on The Ed Sullivan Show in February of 1964, the very same night that the Beatles made their legendary first appearance. Two years later, Mr. Jones was teamed with Mike Nesmith, Peter Tork, and Micky Dolenz on the television series The Monkees, created to cash in on the success of Beatlemania. Although they were originally criticized as the "Pre-Fab Four"- a constructed rip-off of the Beatles's success- the band eventually gained the right to compose and perform their own music under the Monkees name. Various Top 40 hits from the band, including Daydream Believer and I'm A Believer, remain familiar tunes to this day.
Mr. Jones also made a number of television appearances due to his fame, including guest shots on The Brady Bunch, Hey Arnold!, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and more recently, Phineas and Ferb, where he appeared as a member of Candace's favorite band Tiny Cowboy alongside fellow British pop star Peter Noone of Herman's Hermits fame in the "Meatloaf Surprise" episode. The passing of Davy Jones is a sad note for any fan of music and meatloaf, and I join those who mourn in his passing.