"Magical Mystery Tour" airs on British Television (the BBC) for the very first time. (Boxing Day in England) It plays to unanimously poor reviews and, as such, isn't picked up for broadcast here in America. (It will play as "The Midnight Movie" at small, artsy theaters in the late '70's).
Despite all its vibrant psychedelia and vivid colorful images, the BBC airs the program in black and white (which, of course, makes absolutely NO sense at all) … but even this HUGE atrocity can't cover all of the blame for what is truly a lackluster and very disappointing piece of work. (A critic for The Daily Express wrote that he had never before seen "such blatant rubbish".)
While The Monkees are currently scattered all over the globe for the holidays, sessions begin for a new version of "Valleri". With their new record deal, The Monkees have control of their recording sessions and, as such, cannot use the tracks recorded for their television series which were produced by Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart, who wrote the song. When they just can't seem to recapture the feel of the original recording (which was played on radio stations all over the country despite the fact that the track hadn't officially been released), they bring Boyce and Hart in "off the books" to see if they can help them recapture the original groove of the record. (As part of this arrangement, Boyce and Hart will not be credited on the record … production credit will be shown as "Produced by The Monkees".) Happy to be back in the fold, Boyce and Hart agree and also oversee the recording of backing tracks for "P.O. Box 9847" and "Me Without You".
And, for all of you who have asked over the years, that's session guitarist Louis Shelton playing that flamenco-like guitar riff throughout the song, NOT Glen Campbell or Michael Nesmith as has often been reported.
Atlantic Richfield oil workers struck oil on Alaska’s North Slope at Prudhoe Bay.