The Second Disc

Expanded and Remastered Music News

More Monkeemania: Friday Music Reissues “Justus” In CD/DVD Edition

with 5 comments

Monkees - JustusThe recently-announced, and hotly-anticipated, Rhino Handmade box set of The Monkees Present isn’t the only one of the band’s albums on the reissue docket.  Following last year’s similar edition of 1987’s Pool It!, Friday Music will, on May 28, reissue The Monkees’ 1996 reunion album Justus in a CD/DVD package combining the original 12-track CD with a DVD of the original Rhino Home Video tie-in program.

Justus marked the first studio album to feature all four Monkees – Davy Jones, Micky Dolenz, Peter Tork and Mike Nesmith – since 1968’s Head soundtrack.  It also celebrated a landmark anniversary of the band’s very first album.  The Monkees first turned up in shops on October 10, 1966; Justus arrived on October 15, 1996, a little more than thirty years later.  Unlike that debut album, however, Justus was entirely the work of the four Monkees.  Not only was the group credited as producer, but Dolenz played drums, Tork handled bass and keyboards, Jones contributed percussion, and Nesmith wielded guitars for the album.  In addition, every song was written by one of the four Monkees.  In many respects, Justus was a belated sequel to 1967’s Headquarters, the first album over which the band exerted musical control of its own destiny.

Although Justus marked the return of “Papa Nez” into the fold, Mike only contributed one original song – the quirky “Admiral Mike,” sung by Micky.  He took his only lead vocal on the album with the opening track, a rocking rewrite/remake of “Circle Sky” from Head.  But his backing vocals were heard throughout.  Generally, each Monkee sang lead on the songs he wrote.  Dolenz was responsible for the most songs, writing and singing lead on “Never Enough,” “Unlucky Stars,” “Dyin’ of a Broken Heart,” “Regional Girl” and “It’s My Life.”  He and Jones co-wrote “You and I,” first performed with the Dolenz, Jones, Boyce and Hart unit on that group’s 1976 Capitol LP.  (A song of the same name also appeared on The Monkees’ Instant Replay.)  Here, it was transformed into a true Monkees track, with Tork and Nesmith both playing on it.  Jones wrote and sang “Oh, What a Night” and the album-closing ballad “It’s Not Too Late.”  And Peter Tork took the reins for “I Believe You,” also writing “Run Away from Life” for Jones to sing.  Recorded in Hollywood between June and August 1996, Justus was a true group effort.

There’s more after the jump!

Friday Music’s reissue is packaged with a DVD of the 1997 Rhino Justus VHS. This program features a number of music videos from the album together with Monkee interviews and backstage footage.  It’s a celebration of what would turn out to be the final time all four Monkees would record and play together.

Nesmith, who had played some dates with the Monkees in the latter half of the 1980s but did not perform on the Pool It! album, sat out the official 30th anniversary U.S. tour.  He did participate in a Los Angeles show promoting Justus, toured the U.K. with his comrades and participated in a television special for ABC, but his departure from the group was acrimonious.  A 2001 tour for Dolenz, Jones and Tork was the Monkees’ last until 2011, when a well-received 45th anniversary tour reunited the trio.  Unfortunately, it would be the last for Davy Jones, who died suddenly on February 29, 2012.  In November and December of that year, Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork reunited with Mike Nesmith for an unexpected, acclaimed series of shows, the first-ever Monkees performances without Davy Jones and the first with Nesmith since 1997.  The surviving Monkees will take their spirited, eclectic and nostalgic show on the road once again this summer.

Though there are no audio bonus tracks, the Justus DVD might prove enticing enough for Monkee maniacs to take the plunge here.  Friday Music’s CD/DVD reissue arrives in stores on May 28.  You can pre-order below!

The Monkees, Justus: Deluxe Edition (Rhino R2 72542, 1996 – reissued Friday Music, 2013)


  1. Circle Sky
  2. Never Enough
  3. Oh, What a Night
  4. You and I
  5. Unlucky Stars
  6. Admiral Mike
  7. Dyin’ of a Broken Heart
  8. Regional Girl
  9. Run Away from Life
  10. I Believe You
  11. It’s My Life
  12. It’s Not Too Late

DVD:  The Monkees – Justus (Rhino Home Video, 1997)

Includes interviews, backstage clips and music videos of:

  • Regional Girl
  • Admiral Mike
  • Oh, What a Night
  • Run Away from Life
  • You and I
  • Circle Sky

Written by Joe Marchese

May 17, 2013 at 12:24

Posted in News, Reissues, The Monkees

5 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Does anybody have any idea if the DVD contains the same documentary that is on the “Hey Hey Were The Monkees” CD-ROM that came out at about the same time as “Justus”?


    May 17, 2013 at 14:57

  2. Was this album any good at all? I never actually heard the album itself, but I did watch that “Hey Hey” special when it aired and it was right there with the Star Wars Holiday Special as a candidate for the worst 90 minutes of TV I’d ever seen.

    It wasn’t terribly funny (what was with the “vomiting” sparkles?) and I found the songs disappointing too. The “Circle Sky” remake was inferior to the original (not to mention the live version from “Head”), and nothing else from the show clicked with me either. What exactly is a “Regional Girl” anyhow?

    It’s probably better than Pool It! was, but I’m not sure that’s saying much.


    May 18, 2013 at 11:03

  3. With this reissue I’ll finally be making the plunge in owning a copy of “Justus.” Every time I try to give it a chance it doesn’t click with me. I have every other album in deluxe or Rhino handmade reissues, including the Pool It! deluxe (which I actually love). It will be nice to finally have the complete collection even though I try not to consider this part of the catalogue. Who knows, maybe this time around I’ll be able to appreciate it a lot more knowing it’s the last album to include all four Monkees. If anything else, that’s pretty special.

    Bradley James

    May 18, 2013 at 11:33

    • This was a staple of used CD stores for a while–my current, default copy even has a gold “FOR PROMOTION ONLY” stamp. I’ve been meaning to get the “Pool It” reissue for the past year–think with the “Present” box coming out next month, I need to get caught up.


      May 22, 2013 at 21:54

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: