More than just a band that produced some classic music, they remain iconic, their recordings embraced by each new generation.
Looking to grab albums by one of the most iconic bands of the 60s but don’t know where to start? Let us light your fire.
Communion, confrontation and incandescent music lie at the heart of The Doors’ contribution to popular culture. Thanks to frontman Jim Morrison’s charismatic performances, the LA-based quartet became the most talkedabout band in America from 1967 until Morrison’s death in Paris in July 1971 – in circumstances akin to a murder mystery.
In between they released six studio albums, and the double Absolutely Live, mostly taken from their comeback tour in the aftermath of the notorious Miami show at the Dinner Key Auditorium on March 1, 1969. At that show, Morrison allegedly exposed himself. Four days later a warrant for his arrest was issued on charges of gross public indecency, including simulating oral sex on guitarist Robby Krieger (mimicked by David
Bowie on Mick Ronson three years later).
Riots at Doors concerts were nothing new, nor were arrests for their lead singer. His increasingly erratic, often alcoholinduced misdemeanours –tolerated to a degree by keyboard player Ray Manzarek but less so by Krieger and drummer John Densmore – who threatened to quit if Morrison didn’t clean up his act – only enhanced Morrison’s legend.
The Doors’ final show, at the Warehouse in New Orleans on December 12, 1970, ended abruptly with Morrison smashing the microphone stand through the stage before lurching to the wings. A bulky, heavily bearded Morrison made amends by completing the L.A. Woman album that month in The Doors Workshop, their office transformed into a makeshift studio, close to the bars and sleazy joints that became his natural milieu.
An idiosyncratic individual to say the least, Morrison’s presence always galvanised The Doors, a band that combined a weird take on the blues, elements of Latin American beats and forays into poetry, orchestration, shamanistic hallucinations and a strain of dark Brechtian pop whose elusive nature kept The Doors as sinister as they could be playful. They had a unique chemistry, and even when the experiments exploded, they produced something with unusual integrity. Given the antiseptic nature of much current music, The Doors retain an edge – fires were lit and danger was embraced. If you can’t keep a good man down, try handling a bad one. Start your engines – it’s going to be a bumpy ride.