Sir Paul McCartney Reaches Out To Help Team Davy Jones

A SPECIAL MESSAGE:

Auction to Benefit Equine Charity is a Rock & Roll Family Affair

Jessica Jones Cramer

 

My mother was a child of the 1960s. I imagine her lying in her bedroom, contemplating what part she might play in what she describes as “a decade of revolution.” The decade of the Vietnam war, Woodstock, and Timothy Leary—who notoriously advised young people to tune in, turn on and drop out—the decade when young people realised that they had a right to a voice.

 

As a young teenager, my mum, Anita Pollinger, she was still trying to find her voice. Sitting around our kitchen table in rural Hampshire she tells me that her life in 1960s suburbia felt a millennia away from the revolution that was apparently happening everywhere but No.17 Elms Road, Fareham, England.

 

Sketching and drawing pictures of groovy-looking flora and fauna in her bedroom, she listened to the chants of The Beatles, The Stones, and The Kinks. “’People try to put us down. . .talkin’ ‘bout my generatiooooooooooooooon’, well this summed up how I felt that summer,” she says. “I had just been hauled into the headmaster’s office with my Mother and Father because I had failed my 11 Plus Exams.”

 

Nobody likes failing and nobody likes visits to the headmasters office en famille. but what had rocked her world for all the wrong reasons were her headmaster’s words: “Anita, why can’t you get your head out of the clouds and stop wasting your time with silly drawings, doodles, and dancing? You could have real potential as a secretary, with a bright future ahead of you!”

 

It was not the failing of the exam that floored her; it was the dimness of her so-called “bright” future. “Now I realise its moments like that which inspired kids from Fareham to Frisco to seek change in the world,” she tells me.

 

Mum carried on with her drawings and doodles, and went to ballet pretty much every night, and most of every Saturday. My grandparents did not have a TV, and use of “the wireless,” as they called it, was reserved for listening to the news or occasional radio plays. Mum was dependent on her friend Linda to keep her in the loop of the pop music scene, and in particular The Beatles.

 

“I had a picture of Paul McCartney on my wall because you had to choose a Beatle, and it was mandatory to have his picture on your wall,” Mum says. “You also had to choose between The Stones and The Beatles, and that was a tough one for me—I liked them both!”

 

The bands of the time made kids from coast-to-coast feel connected to the revolution. Rocking out to angry lyrics of the time, like “Why don’t you all just f-f-f-fade away? Don’t try to dig what we all saaaaaaaaaaaaaaay.”

 

Mum contemplated how different her grey little life was in comparison to the swinging 60s culture that was available less than 100 miles away in London. Little did she know that during her moments of rage and rebellion, she was actually a peace loving hippy chick in the making. She was just months away from wearing flowers in her hair, living in a commune, working in Biba, and running away with Mott the Hoople, best known for their counterculture anthem All The Young Dudes.

 

One day, sitting in the coffee bar with Linda, Mum heard song on the juke box called “Daydream Believer.” “Linda told me it was from a TV show called The Monkees, and that they were idolised around the world—they were about as big as The Beatles,” she says. “I always missed the show because it was on Saturdays, and I was teaching dancing to pay for my own dance lessons.”

 

“But that’s what my headmaster thought I was—a Daydream Believer—and listening to that song at that moment with my best friend and a cup of coffee in hand, I realised what a good thing that I was,” she says.

 

Months later, Mum was lying on her bed, flipping through her older sister’s teen magazine. She saw a story about a young man from England who was in The Monkees, and he was describing his life in Hollywood.

 

“I remember in particular being very impressed, but somewhat confused, by the circular bed he said that he had. It seemed incredibly ostentatious to me as I lay upon the top of the single bunk bed I shared with my sister,” she tells me. “But as I read it I thought, I am going to know this person one day.”

 

Mum largely ignored the advice of her headmaster, and carried on through the next two decades with her head very much in clouds, coming back to earth to meet and marry David Jones—that young man from The Monkees—and become a mother. Once in a while she would remember her drawings and doodles, and dance with her two little girls in the living room.

 

“After I married, family life kept me so busy. I didn’t make the time to sit and draw anymore, because like most parents, it always felt like there was something more important that I should be doing,” she says. “Then one Christmas, my husband bought me an easel and a set of water colours and brushes.” Time went on and finally and the age of 50, she did follow some of her headmaster’s advice, and buckled down to study, achieving a BA and an MA in fine art.

 

My Dad (or Davy, as you probably know him) passed away tragically and unexpectedly in February 2012, leaving behind four daughters (my sisters are Talia, Sarah, and Annabel) and a herd of 15 rescue horses. With the help of his many devoted and loving fans and other Daydream Believers, my sisters and I have been able to protect these horses, and have formed a charitable trust called the Davy Jones Equine Memorial Foundation (DJEMF).

 

It’s funny how life turns out, because Mum and her two poster boys from her youth have now come together in a charity auction of art and collectables to raise money for the DJEMF. Upon hearing about the horses and the foundation, Sir Paul McCartney stepped in and offered an original photographic print taken by his late wife, photographer Linda McCartney, of one of her beloved Appaloosas.

 

In addition to sir Paul’s donation, many other collectibles and works of art have been donated through the generosity of Dad’s loving friends and family, including my Mum, Anita Pollinger-Jones, rock photographers Henry Diltz and Nurit Wilde, actress Julie Newmar, my sister Annabel Jones, his fellow Monkees Peter Tork and Michael Nesmith, and my own son, Phoenix.

 

When Sir Paul donated “Stallion and Standing Stone II” to our auction, my sisters and I were deeply touched. He wrote to us, “I am happy to donate this beautiful print of Linda’s that I hope will help to raise lots of money for your Dad’s charity.”

 

No doubt it’s big news when Sir Paul joins what we refer to as “Team Jones,” but here is the real story behind Team Jones and the DJEMF: My sisters and I are reminded every day that our Dad touched the lives of a generation of men and women, and so many of them have stepped forward to help his horses as a thank you to Dad. The stories they tell us about our Dad never fail to delight and surprise us. It seems to me these tales about Dad and his generation start and end with a twinkling smile, an act of kindness, and a dance and a song along the way. In my Dad’s words, “music mingles souls,” and his greatest legacy is the loyalty of those he left behind.

 

Thank you, everyone.

 

The DJEMF Art & Collectibles Auction fundraiser runs through
Monday, 26 May at
http://bit.ly/1jmOGKd.


For more information about The Davy Jones Equine Memorial Foundation,
visit djemf.com, or find us on Facebook!

 

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~ by Jennifer Dodge on May 25, 2014.

One Response to “Sir Paul McCartney Reaches Out To Help Team Davy Jones”

  1. What a Lovely and Amazing Story..I always imagined and hoped to someday marry Davy…But I did get to see the concerts. ..in person and followed The Monkees since the very beginning..It was a very sad and devastating day when I heard of Davys death..I had been fortunate enough to have met him and gave him a letter with a stuffed monkey ..he was so sweet and handsome .I always Loved him ..and always will. .♡♡♡♡.I’m a Daydream Believer also♡♡♡♡

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