Laurel Canyon was where Micky Dolenz, Peter Tork and lots of other musicians lived during the 1960's. Mama Cass , Joni Mitchell , the Doors , Jimi Hendrix , Buffalo Springfeld , Henry Diltz, Carole King . The concentration of talent, creativity and great music is comparable to Paris of the 1920's.
"The Monkees and Mama Cass Elliot
A huge buzz in the Laurel Canyon community in the mid '60s surrounded the auditions to find four wacky musicians for a television show called "The Monkees." Originally, Stephen Stills of Buffalo Springfield auditioned for a part, but his "snaggle tooth" kept him from nabbing the role. So instead, he recommended his roommate, flower child Peter Tork. The final formation of the group was made up of Tork, Mike Nesmith, Davy Jones and Micky Dolenz. The Monkees were originally met with criticism from music "purists" because they were a fabricated band. But their comedy genius (John Lennon likened The Monkees to the Marx Brothers) combined with some of the greatest songwriters, such as Boyce & Hart, Neil Diamond (who penned their hit "I'm a Believer"), and Laurel Canyon resident songwriter Carole King (who co-wrote songs like "Pleasant Valley Sunday") would eventually earn them respect as bona fide performers. In addition, Dolenz and Tork's homes were known for some of the most famous -- and infamous -- parties in the canyon!
Known as Laurel Canyon's "Gertrude Stein," Mama Cass Elliot was one of the canyon's most beloved residents, and was known to host legendary get-togethers as well as for making connections between her musician friends that would change American music history. Before moving to Laurel Canyon, Cass was part of the folk group "The Mugwumps" along with friend and future band member, Denny Doherty. When singer John Phillips of the defunct group "The Journeymen" decided to put a new group together with his beautiful new wife, Michelle Phillips, and Doherty, Cass decided she wanted in. But the zaftig singer did not quite fit the look John Phillips wanted for his new group. The undeterred Cass would not give up, eventually John Phillips acquiesced, and the Mamas & the Papas were born! "
"Eye on LA-Laurel Canyon Special"-link
BBC Radio Documentary from a Brit who hitchhiked on the Strip with Davy-link