Wednesday, April 18, 2007

He's still hot...and he's still dead

I don't know how Jim Morrison continues to be able to do this from the grave, but the Doors' famed lead singer is back in the news.
In March 1969, he was arrested in Miami, Florida during a concert for using profanity, exposing himself on stage and simulating a sex act. He was acquitted on some of the charges but still found guilty of indecent exposure and profanity. The verdict was appealed and he was out on bail. He then moved to Paris, France to avoid all of that and eventually died there. Many believe that this arrest sent the Doors and Morrison down a spiral that they were never able to recover from.
Fast forward to 2007, cable TV producer Dave Diamond has written a letter to Florida governer Charlie Crist asking for Morrison to be pardoned. According to Diamond, the goal is to remember Morrison as "an artist, not a rock 'n roll bad boy with a rap sheet."
Governer Crist has said "...I am certainly willing to review it". However, Crist, however, cannot pardon someone by himself. He needs two of the three other members of the Florida Cabinet, which acts as the state clemency board. In addition, there are no procedures for posthumous pardons.
In other Doors' news, they have yet another greatest hits release. What are the odds? With 34 tracks, all of the obvious hits are there along with lesser known stuff that have been sprinkled throughout the numerous greatest hits packages release by the Doors since the early 70s. There is also a DVD with some concert footage. That last part certainly isn't enough to sell me on buying it. I am not that much of a fan and live, to me their sound always suffered. They did not tour with a bass player so all the bass notes you hear in concert are being played by keyboardist Ray Manzarek using foot pedals.
Top 5 Doors songs
1. Roadhouse Blues
2. L.A. Woman
3. Back Door Man
4. Touch Me
5. Love Her Madly
The Doors are still struggling to be a live draw even without Jim Morrison. In 2002 Manzarek and guitar player Robbie Krieger reunited and created a new version of The Doors, called "The Doors of the 21st Century."
This new version of the Doors had the ex lead singer of the 80s band The Cult Ian Astbury handling the vocals. It was originally reported that original Doors drummer John Densmore would not perform as was suffering from tinnitus. He was initially replaced by Stewart Copeland of The Police, but after Copeland broke his arm falling off a bicycle, the arrangement ended in mutual lawsuits, and he was replaced by Ty Dennis, drummer with Krieger's band.

Densmore subsequently claimed that he had in fact not been invited to take part in the reunion. In February 2003 he filed an injunction against his former bandmates hoping to prevent them from using the name "The Doors of the 21st Century." His motion was denied in court in May that year, although Manzarek publicly stated that the invitation for Densmore to return to the group still stood.
It was also reported that both Morrison's family and that of Morrison's long time girlfriend Pamela Courson had joined Densmore in seeking to prevent Manzarek and Krieger from using The Doors' name.
In July 2005, Densmore and the Morrison estate won a permanent injunction, causing the new band to switch to the name "D21C." It now plays under the name Riders on the Storm. They are also allowed to play under names such as "former Doors" and "members of The Doors."


Blogger Cogs said...

Another greatest hits? Wow... Almost getting as bad as the Beatles... My only difference in top 5 would be "Love me two times" in stead of "back door man". But they are both really good tracks. Nice article!

11:44 AM  
Blogger your faithful narrator said...

I like Love Me Two Times but the lyrics are kind of repetitive and the Manzarek's piano work seems kind of lazy.

I love how Morrison growls the line "I'm a back door man". That's why i had to put it in my top 5.

11:50 AM  

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