December 8, 2011
Doors dad ordered hit single
Manzarek tells how band had to beg for money to buy keyboard – and Krieger’s father agreed on one condition
Begging bowl: Ray Manzarek
Doors icon Ray Manzarek has recalled the moment his impoverished young band had to beg for money to buy a keyboard.
And guitarist Robby Krieger’s dad only agreed to pay up one on stringent condition.
Manzarek says that even though he already owned one keyboard, the band’s music couldn’t have worked without the second instrument.
He tells Gibson.com: “My right hand played the organ, with all the filigrees, while the left hand played the same thing over and over again on the bass keyboard. The effect was to go from boring to hypnotic.
“We had to ask Robby’s father for the money to but the keyboard bass. We told him we would pay him back, and he said: ‘Tell you what: you pay me back if go nowhere.
“‘All I ask is that you write a hit single.’”
An expanded version of the Doors’ classic album LA Woman is released in January. Manzarek feels there are a lot of positives as he looks back on the band’s career.
“The real fun of the whole experience was imagining the success of the Doors,” says the keyboardist. “It was like, ‘Alright, we’re going to get a rock and roll band together, make fabulous albums, and have the whole world know who were are, like the Beatles and the Stones and Bob Dylan and the Beach Boys.’
“And we accomplished that. That was our conception. We created the art, and the results of that art achieved exactly what we were hoping for.”
The tragic death of Jim Morrison in 1971 brought the band’s further ambitions to a halt, although the surviving members released two more albums without their iconic singer.
But Manzarek says there wasn’t much that could have been done to save him from his alcoholism.
“In those days Alcoholics Anonymous was more for winos,” he reflects. “Upper-class, sophisticated alcoholics really had no place to go.
“But I don’t know that Jim would have gone along with a 12-step program anyway. He would have had to turn over his life to a higher power, when in fact we are at one with the higher power.
“Alcoholism ran in the Morrison family line. I think he had a genetic predisposition. That’s what eventually did him in. That’s the great tragedy – he was so brilliant, and such a wonderful guy, and so much fun to be with, but there was that demon alcohol.”
Edited by Defiance, 31 December 2011 - 06:57 PM.