Bootlegs, Counterfeits and Piracy

All Monkee records throughout the world were released on the RCA label,
except the USA, which was on Colgems.

Records released on anything else were pirated.

Piracy conjures up thoughts of buried treasure, eye patches and swords but really, it's just theft.

However this was the common means of releasing Western music from the late '60s to the mid '80s
in countries such as Taiwan, South Korea, China, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Iran.

Now these countries did not necessarily consider what they were doing as piracy.
And if they did they didn't really care.

Copyright laws existed long before Rock 'n Roll & The Monkees came along but they often didn't
recognize each other's intellectual property rights.

It had become common practice to have people stationed in California to buy the latest releases
and transport them back to one of these countries and then using the best sound reproduction technology
available to copy and press them on their own private labels. They tried to establish customer loyalty
by featuring attractive women on the picture sleeves or the most popular listing of songs.
But the idea was to get them on the market as fast as possible.

As far as the Monkees are concerned, I've found these private pressing labels from
Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and Iran.

In contrast, bootlegs are performances that have never been officially released,
such as a live recording or studio takes, and counterfeits try to mimic the look
and sound of official releases, but are usually of inferior quality.

There are many bootlegs of the Monkees, but I don't have any on my site.
I don't know of any counterfeit Monkee records though.



From Elisabeth Uphoff's book:

Intellectual Property And US Relations
With Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, And Thailand