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Fun Boy Three cover the Doors, burn the American flag on TV, 1983
09:44 am


The Doors
The Specials
Fun Boy Three

Waiting, the second and final Fun Boy Three LP, produced by David Byrne
At the most recent meeting of the Los Angeles chapter of the Doors Study Group, my friend and former bandmate Jessica Espeleta showed her favorite video on all of YouTube: a TV performance of “The End” by Fun Boy Three, complete with flag-burning.

Fun Boy Three—the group formed by runaway Specials Terry Hall, Neville Staples, and Lynval Golding in 1981—started playing “The End” when the end of their brief career began to loom, according to The Rough Guide to Rock:

Tensions were growing within the band, aggravated by a punishing touring schedule to try to break the group in America. Including The Doors’ “The End” in their set may not have been the wisest move they ever made, especially when they climaxed it by burning an American flag.

More after the jump…

Posted by Oliver Hall | Leave a comment
Picking a lock to the divine: Earliest known recordings of The Doors surface in ‘London Fog 1966’
08:54 am


The Doors

When UCLA film student student Nettie Peña borrowed a reel-to-reel recorder from the high school where her father worked to record her friends’ new group, The Doors—then the “house band” at a small Sunset Strip nightclub—really more of a scuzzy, beer-stained redneck bar than the name might imply called London Fog—she probably had very little idea that she’d one day contribute their earliest known live recordings to rock ‘n’ roll history, but that’s what happened one night in May of 1966.

Released to coincide with the group’s 50th anniversary, the new London Fog 1966 box set from Rhino is—clearly—something that’s targeted to the most serious Doors fanboys. And there are a lot of ‘em, obviously. The deluxe (and it should be noted quite clever) packaging is designed to look like a run-of-the-mill cardboard storage box, the type that you might store under your bed, or in a closet, and then forget about for fifty years. A time capsule, in other words, and this set lives up to that conceit complete with well done facsimile reproductions of that night’s set list written by Robby Krieger’s hand, Peña’s excellent photographs of the baby-faced Doors printed as ever-so-slightly yellowing 8” by 10” B&W glossies, and even a flyer for a UCLA film school midnight screening of Peña’s student film “Call It Collage ‘66” which had a soundtrack by the Doors. (Jim Morrison and Ray Manzarek were Nettie Peña’s fellow students at UCLA.) The music is pressed on a 10” record that looks a bit like an acetate test pressing in a brown sleeve and on a CD.

Now I don’t tend to be someone taken in by tsotchkes that come in box sets—but this one, I must say, is kinda neat. I’m not even that big of a Doors fan, but a big Doors fan would definitely eat this shit up. And again, that’s the person this limited edition (just 18,000 copies) is targeted at, a big Doors fan who wants to hear the earliest known recording of the legendary Doors.

They do seven songs, blues covers such as B.B. King’s “Rock Me” and Muddy Waters’ “I’m Your Hoochie Coochie Man.” They do Little Richard’s “Lucille” (an odd choice). There’s an embryonic “You Make Me Real” (later recorded for their second album Strange Days) and a pretty fully-formed version of “Strange Days” which is probably the short set’s highlight. This set is for the hardcore fan who will frankly forgive the generic garage band blues numbers for a chance to hear The Doors picking the lock on the door to something much more divine, working their way from cover band to magicians.

Buy London Fog 1966

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Kick out the jams: Blue Öyster Cult covers the MC5, Doors, Yardbirds & The Animals

More guitars than most rock bands had back in 1970, the mighty Blue Öyster Cult.
Like the young Patti Smith, I am a huge fan of one of the greatest bands ever to slither out of Long Island, the Blue Öyster Cult. Since getting their start in the late 60s, BÖC has put out over 20 albums including three live records on which the band test drives tracks from the MC5, The Yardbirds, The Animals and the sleazy, acid-coated jam by The Doors “Roadhouse Blues” with Robby Krieger on guitar. Damn.

So full disclosure—I had never heard BÖC’s version of the adrenalin charged 1969 MC5 track “Kick out the Jams” before. Recorded in Atlanta’s historic Fox Theater in 1978, its a very strange oversight that I can’t really comprehend as not only is the MC5 rocker one of my go-to songs when I’m running but so are other covers of the track by Bellingham, Washington band Mono Men and Monster Magnet. So the fact that my rock-seeking radar somehow missed this gem from BÖC’s 1978 live album Some Enchanted Evening (which also features the band’s cover of 1965’s “We’ve Gotta Get Out Of This Place” by The Animals) is really beyond me.

The rest of the covers appear on On Your Feet Or On Your Knees (“I Ain’t Got You” by The Yardbirds and “Born to Be Wild” by Steppenwolf), and Extraterrestrial Live on which BÖC’s cover of “Roadhouse Blues” appears—and the story of how that came to be goes like this. According to vocalist Eric Bloom, BÖC was playing a gig at the Starwood in LA when Krieger showed up and asked to “sit in” with the band. But instead of having Krieger play along to one of their own tunes, BÖC ran with The Doors 1970 classic.

More Blue Öyster Cult after the jump…

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Rock-n-roll Rashomon: Did Jim Morrison really rock out with his cock out onstage in Miami, 1969?
04:02 pm


Jim Morrison
The Doors

On March 1, 1969, Jim Morrison allegedly exposed his… er… lizard king to a shocked audience at the Dinner Key Auditorium that included, in the words of feverish Miami Herald reporter Larry Mahoney: “hundreds of unescorted junior and senior high school girls” for whom “…Morrison appeared to masturbate in full view of the audience, screamed obscenities, and exposed himself.”

It’s one of the most legendary and Dionysian performances in all of rock and roll history; but was the supposed “main event” just a legend or did “it” really happen? Did a drunken Jim Morrison, inspired by the anarchist thespians of the Living Theatre, really whip it out onstage in Miami and simulate fellatio on guitarist Robby Krieger or is this all just an urban myth?

It seems to be a little of both, perhaps leaning more to the myth side. Mr. Mojo Risin was obviously up to no good that night, and if given enough rope Morrison might well have pulled his plonker out. But did he actually do it or did he merely pretend like he had?

On March 5, the Dade County sheriff’s office issued a warrant for Morrison’s arrest for “lewd and lascivious behavior in public by exposing his private parts and by simulating masturbation and oral copulation” and other misdemeanors including counts of public profanity and public drunkenness. Morrison turned himself in to the FBI in Los Angeles on April 4, 1969 and vehemently denied the allegations. He was arrested on September 20th in Coconut Grove and on November 9, 1969 he entered a not guilty plea in Miami.

The trial began on August 12, 1970. Morrison rejected a proposed plea bargain that the Doors would play a charity benefit concert in Miami, and although over 500 photographs were admitted into evidence—not a single one of them showing Morrison rocking out with his cock out—five weeks later, on September 20, 1970, the jury found Jim Morrison guilty on the misdemeanor charges of indecent exposure and profanity. He was found not guilty on the felony charge and the misdemeanor for drunkenness.

Morrison was given the maximum fine of $500 and sentenced to six months in prison at Raiford Penitentiary including 60 days of hard labor. He was released on a $50,000 bond and a 20 date Doors concert tour was soon cancelled.

Robby Krieger has always denied that “it” ever happened. So has Ray Manzarek who told NPR’s Terry Gross in a 1998 Fresh Air interview:

“We’re in Miami. It’s hot and sweaty. It’s a swamp and it’s a yuck—a horrible kind of place, a seaplane hangar—and 14,000 people are packed in there, and they’re sweaty, And Jim has seen The Living Theatre and he’s going to do his version of The Living Theatre. He’s going to show these Florida people what psychedelic West Coast shamanism and confrontation is all about.”

Morrison poured champagne over himself and took his shirt off, asking the crowd if they wanted more.

“They hallucinated. I swear, the guy never did it. He never whipped it out. It was one of those mass hallucinations. I don’t want to say the vision of Lourdes, because only Bernadette saw that, but it was one of those religious hallucinations, except it was Dionysus bringing forth, calling forth snakes… And they started coming down on a rickety little stage, and the entire stage collapsed.”

Doors drummer John Densmore told the Hollywood Reporter in 2010:

He didn’t do it! I was there; if Jim had revealed the golden shaft, I would have known. There were hundreds of photographs taken and tons of cops and no evidence. Yeah, Jim was a drunk and a sensational, crazy guy, but he also was a great artist and I want him to be remembered for the art as well as the craziness. At the time, things were pretty political with the Vietnam War—the whole country was polarized, not unlike today—and he went to see Julian Beck and Judith Malina of The Living Theatre and was inspired because they wore minimal clothes and were going up the aisles saying, “No passports, no pieces.” It was pretty wild stuff. Jim tried to inject it in to the Miami concert, and he was inebriated, so it wasn’t so successful. Musically, it was terrible, but politically, it was intriguing. So that was his motive and then it became this sensational, “get the hippie band that represents the counter culture!”

At the time of the incident Doors’ manager Bill Siddons told Rolling Stone that it was “just another dirty Doors show. It didn’t seem to be too big a deal until the police chief took it on as his crusade”—but denied that Morrison had exposed his penis:

“I mean, no one in the group saw him do it. Morrison said he did it, but not onstage. Like he had been tucking in his shirt or something and he might have slipped a little. But offstage.”

Contradicting himself in the very same Rolling Stone article, Siddons also says that as he came offstage Morrison personally told him:

“Uh-oh—I think I exposed myself.”

Continues after the jump…

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
When Harrison Ford shot Jim Morrison

1968: Harrison Ford was working as a carpenter (working on houses, building sets) when he was asked by photographer and former UCLA student Paul Ferrara if he would like help out on a documentary about The Doors. It was an opportunity the 25-year-old Ford gladly accepted—though his experience of working with the band would leave him “one step away from joining a Jesuit monastery.”
Harrison Ford filming The Doors at the Northern California Folk-Rock Festival.
Ferrara had access to The Doors through his friendship with Jim Morrison and Ray Manzarek. He began filming his documentary Feast of Friends in April 1968 as single shooter/director. He then invited a colleague Babe Hill to record audio on a portable Nagra. After more filming, he decided one camera was not enough and asked around for a second unit cameraman. At a party, Ferrara met Harrison Ford, who he knew through carpentry work Ford had carried out on his house. Ferrara offered him the job of second camera/grip.
Ford using a clapperboard at the start of filming.
According to The Doors Guide, Ford had a crash course in shooting film at Sixth Annual Renaissance Pleasure Faire in Agoura, CA on May 4, 1968. John Densmore and Robby Krieger from the group were also in attendance while Harrison shot some footage.

Ford’s first gig as second unit cameraman came two weeks later at the Northern California Folk-Rock Festival in San Jose, where he filmed The Doors performing onstage. Ford can be seen operating the camera among the audience.

The following month, Ford was with band in Fresno and can be seen using a clapperboard before a take while Manzarek and co. play cards in the background.

He then filmed at the band’s concert in Bakersfield Civic Center, where he was caught in shot walking behind Jim Morrison.
Harrison Ford gets in shot during when filming Jim Morrison.
What happened next is unclear. However, when later asked about his experience working with The Doors on MTV’s The Big Picture Show in 1989, Ford said:

When it was over, I was one step away from joining a Jesuit monastery. I thought it was cool, I thought it was hip, but I couldn’t keep up with those guys. It was too much.

One can only guess at what an alleged heavy dope smoker like Harrison Ford would define as “too much”!

Continues after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Other Voices: The Doors without Jim Morrison, 1972
02:28 pm


The Doors

When Jim Morrison died in a Paris apartment bathtub at the age of 27 on July 3, 1971, the remaining Doors decided to continue. After considering replacing the late Lizard King with a new singer, Robby Krieger and Ray Manzarek decided to switch off on lead vocals. They would go on to release two more albums before breaking up in 1973. Both were constant denizens of dollar cut-out bins and neither album has ever been released on CD in America.

Almost immediately after Morrison’s untimely demise, they recorded Other Voices (get it?) during the summer of 1971, and that album saw release in October. Other Voices’ single was a number called “Tightrope Ride” sung by Manzarek. To support the record, the Jim-less Doors began performing live again with additional musicians, playing gigs during November in Lincoln, Nebraska, Carnegie Hall in New York and the Hollywood Palladium.

The following spring, they went into the studio again to record the jazzy sounding Full Circle which was released in August 1972. But before that album came out, beginning in May, they toured Europe joined by Jack Conrad on bass (he was on both albums) and rhythm guitarist Bobby Ray Henson. Here’s what little evidence exists of that outing, an appearance on Germany’s Beat-Club television show. Although it is 3/4 of The Doors, most of this sounds like a completely different group of musicians (variously they sound like Moby Grape, the Dead or a less funky Santana and the sole Morrison-era song is “Love Me Two Times.”) It’s not like it’s bad, but neither would anyone mistake it for being great. Still, I don’t want to slam the Doors, this set is an odd curio of the band’s career and not without its charm or interest.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Classic album covers minus deceased band members

Over the weekend, when the sad news spread about the passing of Tommy Ramone, a really touching image circulated online, showing the Ramones debut LP, then the same cover with Joey, Johnny, and Dee Dee Photoshopped out, and then, at last, Tommy removed as well. Dangerous Minds even shared it on our Facebook page.

The middle image, of Tommy standing alone in front of that iconic brick wall, seems to have come from a Tumblr called “Live! (I See Dead People),” which is devoted entirely to skillfully removing deceased musicians from their LP covers—sort of like “Garfield Minus Garfield,” but with a more serious intent. The subjects range from cult figures like Nick Drake to canonical rock stars like Nirvana and The Doors, and the results are often quite poignant. The blog hasn’t been updated in almost three years, so it seems unlikely the artists behind this project, Jean-Marie Delbes and Hatim El Hihi, will re-do that Ramones cover. Indeed, their Morrison Hotel still features Ray Manzarek, who passed on a little over a year ago.

New York Dolls, s/t

Ol Dirty Bastard, Return to the 36 Chambers

Nick Drake, Bryter Layter

The Who, Odds & Sods

Johnny Thunders, So Alone

George Harrison, All Things Must Pass

Nirvana, “Smells Like Teen Spirit

Jeff Buckley, Grace

The Doors, Morrison Hotel

John Lennon & Yoko Ono, Double Fantasy

The Clash, s/t

Elvis Presley, s/t

Hat-tip to Derf for this find.

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
Classic rock conspiracy theory: ‘Weird Scenes Inside the Canyon,’ the dark heart of the hippie dream

The standard modus operandi of a work of “conspiracy theory” is fairly straightforward. The author/researcher takes some commonly accepted historical narrative, and lavishes scepticism upon it, while simultaneously maintaining an alternative understanding of what “really” happened, one that ostensibly better fits the considered facts.

While Dave McGowan’s Weird Scenes Inside the Canyon : Laurel Canyon, Covert Ops & The Dark Heart of the Hippie Dream, indubitably follows this approach, its focus is utterly unique. Not to put too fine a point on it, the book is no less than the Official Classic Rock Conspiracy Theory, with individual chapters tackling the unlikely subjects of Frank Zappa, the Doors, Love, the Beach Boys, the Byrds, Gram Parsons and more, the careers of which are scrutinized for the fingerprints of the secret state.

What you make of McGowan’s criteria in and of itself (which ranges fairly widely, and at times wildly, from a “tell-tale” preoccupation with the occult to heavy military-industrial family ties), to my mind the virtue of Weird Scenes dwells in the ensuing atmosphere of incredible fairy-tale strangeness—not unlike Joan Didion’s own famous look at California in the late sixties, The White Album. On almost every page, movie-star mansions, knitted with secret passages, spontaneously combust; murders, suicides and overdoses spread through the celebrity populace; cults spring up peopled with mobsters and spies… and all the while, this timeless, intriguing music keeps on geysering away. I contacted McGowan about his bizarre book earlier this week…

Thomas McGrath: Hi Dave. Could you begin please by telling us something about your previous work?

David McGowan: My work as a political/social critic began around 1997, when I began to see signs that the political landscape in this country was about to change in rather profound ways. That was also the time that I first ventured onto the internet, which opened up a wealth of new research possibilities. I put up my first website circa 1998, and an adaptation of that became my first book, Derailing Democracy, in 2000. That first book, now out of print, was a warning to the American people that all the changes we have seen since the events of September 11, 2001 – the attacks on civil rights, privacy rights, and due process rights; the militarization of the nation’s police forces; the waging of multiple wars; the rise of surveillance technology and data mining, etc. – were already in the works and just waiting for a provocation to justify their implementation. My second book, Understanding the F-Word, was a review of twentieth-century US history that attempted to answer the question: “if this is in fact where we’re headed, then how did we get here?” Since 9-11, I’ve spent a good deal of time researching the events of that day and looked into a wide range of other topics. My third book, Programmed to Kill, was a look at the reality and mythology of what exactly a serial killer is. For the past six years, I have spent most of my time digging into the 1960s and 1970s Laurel Canyon counterculture scene, which has now become my fourth book, Weird Scenes Inside the Canyon.

Thomas McGrath:  Am I right in presuming that you take it as a given fact that power networks are essentially infected by occultism? Are these cults essentially Satanic, or what?

David McGowan: Yes, I do believe that what you refer to as power networks, otherwise known as secret societies, are occult in nature. The symbolism can be seen everywhere, if you choose not to maneuver your way through the world deaf, dumb and blind. And I believe that it has been that way for a very long time. As for them being Satanic, I suppose it depends upon how you define Satanic. I personally don’t believe the teachings of either Satanism or Christianity, which are really just opposite sides of the same coin. I don’t believe that there is a God or a devil, and I don’t believe that those on the upper rungs of the ladder on either side believe so either. These are belief systems that are used to manipulate the minds of impressionable followers. In the case of Satanism, it is, to me, a way to covertly sell a fascist mindset, which is the direction the country, and the rest of the world, is moving. Those embracing the teachings think they are rebelling against the system, but they are in reality reinforcing it. Just as the hippies did. And just as so-called Patriots and Anarchists are. I don’t believe there has been a legitimate resistance movement in this country for a very long time.

Thomas McGrath: Tell us about Weird Scenes Inside the Canyon. What is this new book’s central thesis?

David McGowan: To the extent that it has a central thesis, I would say that it is that the music and counterculture scene that sprung to life in the 1960s was not the organic, grassroots resistance movement that it is generally perceived to be, but rather a movement that was essentially manufactured and steered. And a corollary to that would be that for a scene that was supposed to be all about peace, love and understanding, there was a very dark, violent underbelly that this book attempts to expose.

Thomas McGrath: How convinced are you by it and why?

David McGowan: Very convinced. It’s been a long journey and virtually everything I have discovered – including the military/intelligence family backgrounds of so many of those on the scene, both among the musicians and among their actor counterparts; the existence of a covert military facility right in the heart of the canyon; the prior connections among many of the most prominent stars; the fact that some of the guiding lights behind both the Rand Corporation and the Project for a New American Century were hanging out there at the time, as were the future governor and lieutenant governor of California, and, by some reports, J. Edgar Hoover and various other unnamed politicos and law enforcement personnel; and the uncanny number of violent deaths connected to the scene – all tend to indicate that the 1960s counterculture was an intelligence operation.

Thomas McGrath: You propose that hippie culture was established to neutralise the anti-war movement. But I also interpreted your book as suggesting that, as far as you’re concerned, there’s also some resonance between what you term “psychedelic occultism” (the hippie counterculture) and the “elite” philosophy/theology? You think this was a second reason for its dissemination?

David McGowan: Yes, I do. Hippie culture is now viewed as synonymous with the anti-war movement, but as the book points out, that wasn’t always the case. A thriving anti-war movement existed before the first hippie emerged on the scene, along with a women’s rights movement, a black empowerment/Black Panther movement, and various other movements aimed at bringing about major changes in society. All of that was eclipsed by and subsumed by the hippies and flower children, who put a face on those movements that was offensive to mainstream America and easy to demonize. And as you mentioned, a second purpose was served as well – indoctrinating the young and impressionable into a belief system that serves the agenda of the powers that be.

Thomas McGrath: One thing your book does very convincingly, I think, is argue that many if not most of the main movers in the sixties counterculture were, not to put too fine a point on it, horrendous, cynical degenerates. However, one might argue that a predilection for drugs, alcohol, and even things like violence and child abuse, does not make you a member of a government cult. You disagree?

David McGowan:  No. I’ve known a lot of people throughout my life with a predilection for drugs and alcohol, none of whom were involved in any cults, government or otherwise. And I don’t believe that a predilection for drugs makes one a degenerate. The focus on drug use in the book is to illustrate the point that none of the scene’s movers and shakers ever suffered any legal consequences for their rampant and very open use of, and sometimes trafficking of, illicit drugs. The question posed is why, if these people were really challenging the status quo, did the state not use its law enforcement powers to silence troublemakers? I do have zero tolerance for violence towards and abuse of children, which some people in this story were guilty of. But that again doesn’t make someone a member of a cult – though it does make them seriously morally challenged.

Thomas McGrath: You say in the book that you were always a fan of sixties music and culture. Weirdly, I found that, even while reading Weird Scenes, I was almost constantly listening to the artists you were denouncing. I mean, I found albums like Pet Sounds, Forever Changes, Return of the Grievous Angel,et al sounded especially weird in the context, but I still couldn’t resist sticking them on. I was wondering if you still listen to these records yourself?

David McGowan: Yes, I do. The very first rock concert I ever attended was Three Dog Night circa 1973 – a Laurel Canyon band, though I did not know that until about five years ago. To my mind, the greatest guitarist who ever lived was Jimi Hendrix, and Janis Joplin was arguably the finest female vocalist – in terms of raw power and emotion – to ever take the stage. I don’t know that it is accurate to describe my book as “denouncing” various artists. Brian Wilson, who composed Pet Sounds, is described as the finest and most admired composer of his generation. The guys from Love, architects of Forever Changes, are presented as among the most talented musicians of the era. Frank Zappa is acknowledged as an immensely talented musician, composer and arranger. And so on. It is true that I believe that some of the most famed artists to emerge from Laurel Canyon are vastly overrated, with Jim Morrison and David Crosby quickly coming to mind. And it’s true that on some of the most loved albums that came out of the canyon, the musicians who interpreted the songs weren’t the ones on the album covers. And it’s also true that, unlike other books that have covered the Laurel Canyon scene, Weird Scenes doesn’t sugarcoat things. But the undeniable talent and artistry of many of the canyon’s luminaries is acknowledged. And the book also shines a little bit of light on some of the tragically forgotten figures from that era, like Judee Sill and David Blue, which could lead to readers rediscovering some of those artists and the talents that they had to offer.
Weird Scenes Inside the Canyon: Laurel Canyon, Covert Ops & The Dark Heart of the Hippie Dream is available now in special pre-release hardback only from Headpress. The paperback is out next month, and should be available from all strange bookshops.

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
Beyond the Doors: Conspiracy theories about the deaths of Jimi, Janis and Jim

Posted by Thomas McGrath | Leave a comment
A Door closes: Ray Manzarek dead at 74
05:07 pm


The Doors
Ray Manzarek

Sad to hear this.

Via The Doors’ Facebook page:

Ray Manzarek, keyboardist and founding member of The Doors, passed away today at 12:31PM PT at the RoMed Clinic in Rosenheim, Germany after a lengthy battle with bile duct cancer. He was 74. At the time of his passing, he was surrounded by his wife Dorothy Manzarek, and his brothers Rick and James Manczarek.

Manzarek is best known for his work with The Doors who formed in 1965 when Manzarek had a chance encounter on Venice Beach with poet Jim Morrison. The Doors went on to become one of the most controversial rock acts of the 1960s, selling more than 100-million albums worldwide, and receiving 19 Gold, 14 Platinum and five multi-Platinum albums in the U.S. alone. “L.A.Woman,” “Break On Through to the Other Side,” “The End,” “Hello, I Love You,” and “Light My Fire” were just some of the band’s iconic and ground-breaking songs. After Morrison’s death in 1971, Manzarek went on to become a best-selling author, and a Grammy-nominated recording artist in his own right. In 2002, he revitalized his touring career with Doors’ guitarist and long-time collaborator, Robby Krieger.

“I was deeply saddened to hear about the passing of my friend and bandmate Ray Manzarek today,” said Krieger. “I’m just glad to have been able to have played Doors songs with him for the last decade. Ray was a huge part of my life and I will always miss him.”

Manzarek is survived by his wife Dorothy, brothers Rick and James Manczarek, son Pablo Manzarek, Pablo’s wife Sharmin and their three children Noah, Apollo and Camille. Funeral arrangements are pending. The family asks that their privacy be respected at this difficult time. In lieu of flowers, please make a memoriam donation in Ray Manzarek’s name at

Below, a post-Jim Morrison Doors do “Love Me Two Times” on Germany’s Beat Club TV show, with Manzarek taking over the vocal duties:

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Oliver Stone’s epic re-imagining of ‘JFK’ and ‘The Doors’: ‘Break On Through With JFK’
02:08 pm


The Doors
Oliver Stone
Dana Gould

I hated Oliver Stone’s The Doors but found JFK quite thrilling. So this radical new concept from Stone could only be an improvement on his woeful take on Jim Morrison.

When will this be available on Blu-ray? I can hardly wait. Could a mash-up of Platoon and Natural Born Killers be in the pipeline? Mickey and Mallory go to My Lai.

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
‘Light My Fire’: Is the very best Doors cover, ever, by Shirley Bassey?
06:10 pm


The Doors
Shirley Bassey

Well, I think it is.

When my wife and I got together and our record collections were merged, I was pleased to see that I was marrying a fellow Shirley Bassey fan. We were in firm agreement on the Welsh songbird’s cover of The Doors’ “Light My Fire” from her 1970 comeback album, Shirly Bassey is Really Something. Both of us had used it DJing. I don’t know about Tara, but it was something I played all the time. As in every time I DJ’d. Every single time.

Shirly Bassey is Really Something was, and still is, an album that you can find for between 25 cents and a dollar in virtually any used record store. It’s amazing, an A+ album, in my opinion. Considering that nearly all of the songs are cover versions—albeit skillfully selected ones—it’s a pretty cohesive listening experience. Aside from “Light My Fire,” she does the best version of George Harrison’s “Something” this side of Frank Sinatra, as well as incredible takes on “Easy to Be Hard” (from the musical Hair), Blood, Sweat & Tears’ “Spinning Wheel” and what is probably the definite performance of Michel Legrand’s “What Are You Doing The Rest Of Your Life,” one of the most powerful love songs ever written, and made all the better with that amazing voice of hers. (The only other version that’s anywhere near as good as Bassey’s comes from a similarly powerful “belter,” Scott Walker).

“Easy to Be Hard”:

Below, Shirley Bassey performs “Light My Fire,” backed by a large orchestra, on her 1973 All About Shirley TV special and just kills it:

More Shirley Bassey after the jump…

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
‘First Love’: Jim Morrison’s UCLA film from 1964

In 1964, Jim Morrison made the short film First Love as part of his UCLA Film course. This version has been re-cut to The Doors track “The Spy” by Nuno Monteiro, which fits rather well.

Bonus - alternative version of Morrison’s film after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
The Doors performing ‘Stairway To Heaven’
12:14 am


The Doors
Stairway To Heaven

Okay I lied. Morrison was dead months before “Stairway To Heaven” was released. What we have here is The Australian Doors in a highly entertaining video that manages to take the piss out on both bands.

This performance appeared on Australian TV show The Money Or The Gun, which ran for one season (1989-90) and each week featured a guest performer doing a version of Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway To Heaven,” over 25 in all.

I’ve picked three “Stairway” covers I like: Elvis, The Doors and The Beatles.

More “stairways” after the jump…

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Rarely seen footage of The Doors during ‘L.A. Woman’ recording session
03:04 pm


The Doors
L.A. Woman

The Doors perform “Crawling King Snake” in the Elektra Records studios in 1970 as part of a promo for the soon-to-be released album L.A Woman. Morrison would be dead less than a year after this film was shot.

This footage was produced by ABC Australia for TV program “Getting To Know.”

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Skating around Los Angeles

I loathe The Doors, but their song “L.A. Woman” works nicely in this skate video featuring Kenny Anderson, Alex Olson, Braydon Szafranski, as well as Doors members Robbie Krieger and John Densmore.

It’s very... El Lay.


Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
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