The Monkees’ Supervisor Got Fired for Releasing ‘A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You’ as a Single
Don Kirshner served as The Monkees‘ music supervisor during the early years of the band’s career. Kirshner decided The Monkees’ “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You” should be a single. Subsequently, his professional ties to the Prefab Four were severed.
Why The Monkees expected to have more control over their songs
Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart formed a songwriting duo named Boyce & Hart. Together, they co-wrote many songs for The Monkees, who had little influence over their own music a first. In his 2015 book Psychedelic Bubble Gum: Boyce & Hart, The Monkees, and Turning Mayhem Into Miracles, Hart said the band wanted more control of their music.
“Now, the group was able to convince their TV producer, Bert Schneider, that they should at least be represented on the B sides of their singles with a group-produced recording,” Hart recalled. “Schneider assured the four singers that he would see to it. After all, his dad was still president of Screen Gems-Columbia.”
Why The Monkees’ ‘A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You’ became a single even thought Neil Diamond wrote it
Kirshner ignored Schneider’s request to give The Monkees more control. “Kirshner released a Jeff Barry-produced side written by Neil Diamond as The Monkee’s third single, ‘A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You,'” Hart wrote. “The group had already leaked it to the press that they would hereafter be producing their own records.”
Kirshner’s decision had an effect on his career. “Embarrassed and angry, [The Monkees] went to see Bert Schneider,” Hart remembered. “On a cold New York morning at the end of February 1967, Don Kirshner was unceremoniously relieved of his duties as head of Colgems Records and music supervisor of The Monkees and all other Screen Gems shows.” Hart opined this event was the beginning of the end for the Prefab Four.
How ‘A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You’ performed on the charts in the United Kingdom and the United States
“A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You” became a hit in the United States. The song reached No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100, staying on the chart for six weeks. The track was prevented from topping the chart by Frank and Nancy Sinatra’s “Somethin’ Stupid.”
The Official Charts Company reports “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You” was similarly popular in the United Kingdom. There, the track reached No. 3 and remained on the chart for 12 weeks. Only two Prefab Four singles — “I’m a Believer” and “Randy Scouse Git” — reached higher peaks in the U.K.
“A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You” was a hit — even if the Prefab Four didn’t want it to be a single.