Boyce & Hart

I Wonder What She's Doing Tonite?

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"I Wonder What She's Doing Tonite?" went Top Ten in January of 1968, toward the end of Monkee-mania, and it's as splendid a pop tune about lovelorn insecurity as you'll find. The album titled after the hit is a real treat, and is up there with some of the better albums by the Monkees; the pair's ability to blend American bubblegum with British pop makes for a unique confection. You can hear the wonderful sounds that come out of that mixture on "Goodbye Baby (I Don't Want to See You Cry)" and "Pretty Flower," which ends with a bizarre kind of Velvet Underground vocal chatter out of "The Murder Mystery." "Goodbye Baby"'s ending is straight off the Rolling Stones' Their Satanic Majesties Request, while "Love Every Day" has a melody straight from Herman's Hermits' "Listen People." Not content to nick riffs from everyone else, they loop their own "Last Train to Clarksville" guitar line under "Teardrop City." "I'm Digging You Digging Me," "Leaving Again," and "The Countess" are all first-rate pop, side two flowing better without the filler of the first side's "Two for the Price of One," the only song they didn't write that seems to be about the duo. Calling Boyce "the gangster of love" might reference the Steve Miller Band, but the song comes off as just silly. At four minutes and 44 seconds, "Population" seems to be their political statement, a minor '60s protest with Allan Sherman's "Hello Mudduh, Hello Fadduh!" tucked inside, the song sliding neatly into a beautiful version of the Monkees' favorite, "I Wanna Be Free." It's a nice piano/guitar/vocal duet much different from Davy Jones' popular rendition, and a beautiful ending to an often overlooked set of recordings.

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