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File:The-doors.jpg

He went into the room where his sister lived, and...then he

Paid a visit to his brother, and then he

He walked on down the hall, and

And he came to a door...and he looked inside

"Father?" "Yes, son?" "I want to kill you."

Mother...I want to... FFFFUCKYOUUUUAAAAAAARRRRGGHHH!"
—"The End"

One of the most important and influential bands in rock's history. Led by the infamous Jim Morrison, aka Mr. Mojo Risin', aka The Lizard King, with Ray Manzarek on keyboard, Robbie Krieger on guitar, and John Densmore on drums, The Doors became famous in The Sixties for their dark, theatrical, blues-influenced Psychedelic Rock and Morrison's surreal, Word Salad Lyrics.

Members:

  • John Densmore: Drums
  • Robbie Krieger: Guitar
  • Ray Manzarek: Keyboards, keyboard bass, vocals
  • Jim Morrison: Vocals, harmonica

While Manzarek played keyboard bass during live performances, the band commonly enlisted session musicians to play actual bass on their albums; they didn't do this with most of the tracks on their first album, and Manzarek wasn't satisfied with the sound that resulted.

Studio Album Discography

  • The Doors (1967)
  • Strange Days (1967)
  • Waiting For The Sun (1968)
  • The Soft Parade (1969)
  • Morrison Hotel (1970)
  • LA Woman (1971)
  • Other Voices (1971)
  • Full Circle (1972)
  • An American Prayer (1978)

This band contains examples of:

  • Acquitted Too Late: Non-death penalty version: In December 2010, the state of Florida pardoned him for that infamous "lewd and lascivious conduct" charge he earned during a 1970 concert, the details of which are sketchy and vary wildly depending on which of the witnesses you ask.
  • Anti-Love Song: Subverted. Many of the songs written by Jim were true love songs to a girlfriend, his future wife Pamela Courson, with whom he had an extremely volatile relationship.
  • The Band Minus the Face: After Jim's death, the other three released two albums (Other Voices and Full Circle) with Ray Manzarek on lead vocals. Both albums have been out of print since before the CD era.
    • Manzarek also sings lead on Close To You, an R&B number on the Absolutely Live album.
    • Riders on the Storm (formerly The 21st Century Doors before the Morrison estate sued), a covers band fronted by Manzarek and Krieger, which has toured with numerous singers, most notably Ian Astbury of the Cult, since the early 2000s.
  • Badass Beard: Jim Morrison had one toward the end of his life.
  • Bawdy Song: Oh, lord, yes!
  • Biopic: The Doors directed by Oliver Stone.
  • Bowdlerise: The lyric "She gets high!" in Break on Through was clipped on the original vinyl release, and all subsequent releases until the CD remaster in 2003.
    • In addition, a notorious incident occurred when the band appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1967. Ed's camera crew insisted that the line "Girl we couldn't get much higher" be changed to "Girl we couldn't get much better" (even though the latter didn't rhyme). Krieger, who had written those words, agreed to the change - but then during the actual performance (at least as depicted in Oliver Stone's film), Morrison lurches right at the camera and defiantly shouts "Girl we couldn't get much HIGHER!"....before slipping his hand down his pants and masturbating. The Doors never appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show again.
      • That was only in the film. In reality, the Ed Sullivan people told the Doors to change the lyrics to "Girl, you really light my fire" days before the show. Neither Morrison nor Krieger wanted to change it, partially because they didn't want to be censored and partially because they thought it'd be funny to annoy the Ed Sullivan people. During the show, Jim didn't add emphasis to the word "higher" nor did he make any lewd gesture outside of wearing tight leather pants. After the show, Jim said he simply forgot to change the lyrics because he was nervous.
  • Canon Dis Continuity: Other Voices and Full Circle have been out-of-print since the 70's and have never been released on CD. Both albums were critical failures and commercial disasters.
    • Which was a shame, since "In the Eye of the Sun" from Other Voices is reminiscent of classic Doors, even if Jim isn't around to sing it.
    • The Post-Morrison Doors are also notable for being the inspiration for the Fake Band, Pusswhip Gangbang from The Tim and Eric Show.
  • Careful with That Axe: Possibly the Trope Maker.
    • Never more effective than in Celebration of the Lizard: immediately after the "Little Game" sequence, Jim lets out a scream so shrill that he sounds like a woman!
  • Circus of Fear: The vaguely destitute circus performers seen on the cover of Strange Days.
    • Also that's how some folks describe the sounds that come from Manzarek's organ
  • Cloudcuckoolander: One way of looking at Jim Morrison.
  • Compilation Rerelease: There have been several box sets collecting all their albums released.
  • Concept Album: An American Prayer; Jim recorded a bunch of his poetry before he died, then several years later, the other Doors set it to music.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: From "Peace Frog": "Ghosts crowd the young child's fragile, eggshell mind".
  • Drunken Song: Morrison's drinking habit was legendary.
    • According to those present at the session, he recorded his vocal for "Five to One" when quite hammered indeed. This is clear from his sometimes slurred words--"You walk across the floowr widda ffflower 'n your hand"--and from his spoken-word ad-lib, during the coda, about going to the woods and getting "fucked up." (The original studio release faded out before this point for obvious reasons; the full coda, complete with profanity, was restored in later CD editions.)
  • Echoing Acoustics
  • Epic Rocking: "The End", "When The Music's Over", "Celebration of the Lizard", to a lesser extent "Light My Fire", "The Soft Parade", "LA Woman", "Riders On The Storm", "Love Me Two Times".
  • Follow the Leader: If You've heard a hard rock band or band with Dark music from the last forty years, There's around an seventy-four percent chance They were influenced by The Doors.
  • A Good Name for a Rock Band: Taken from William Blake's poem The Marriage Of Heaven And Hell: "If the doors of perception were cleansed every thing would appear to man as it is, infinite."
    • It's also a reference to Aldous Huxley's essay extolling the virtues of psychedelics, The Doors of Perception, whose title is of course itself a reference to the Blake poem.
  • Gratuitous Panning
  • Heavy Meta: "The WASP(Texas Radio and the Big Beat)", among others.
  • Hell-Bent for Leather: Its paractically impossible to imagine Jim without his leather pants.
  • Improv: A lot of their live show was improvised.
  • Intercourse with You: While maybe not the Trope Maker, definitely the Trope Codifier.
  • Large Ham: Morrison - not so much in the beginning, but increasingly so from Waiting For The Sun onwards.
  • Last-Second Word Swap: In "L'America":

 Come on people, don't ya look so down

You know the rain man's comin' ta town

Change the weather, change your luck

And then he'll teach ya how to... find yourself

L'America

  • Looks Like Jesus: Morrison when he had a beard.
  • Lyrical Dissonance
  • The Man Behind the Curtain: The principal lineup of the Doors did not include a bass player. The group used various session musicians on their studio albums, while in live shows they compensated for the lack of a bassist by having Ray Manzarek play piano bass with his left hand while playing the keyboard parts with his right.
  • Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: While generally hovering between 4 and 6, for their time, they would be a 10.
  • Murder Ballad: "The killer awoke before dawn" section of "The End", as well as "Riders On The Storm". An American Prayer includes a piece called "The Hitchhiker", which retells Riders from the perspective of the murderer.
  • Neoclassical Punk Zydeco Rockabilly: The musicians in the band. Ray Manzarek was a classically-trained pianist before he switched to organ; Robbie Krieger started out as a flamenco guitarist; John Densmore was a jazz drummer who had only just discovered the blues.
  • New Sound Album: Waiting for the Sun and The Soft Parade were considerably more pop-friendly than the group's early work - the former still had some hard-edged tunes like "Five to One" and "The Unknown Soldier", while the latter featured Lighter and Softer lyrics and extensive brass and string overdubs. The group returned to their hard blues-rock sound for Morrison Hotel.
  • Nobody Loves the Bassist: Probably why they didn't even have one. Well, apart from Ray.
  • Nothing Is the Same Anymore: Everything after Jim's death!
  • Oedipus Complex: Again, "The End".
  • Premature Encapsulation: Their third album bore the title Waiting for the Sun, but the song by that name wasn't released until two albums later, on Morrison Hotel.
  • Progressive Rock: Their classical/baroque-influenced arrangements, Ray Manzarek's keyboard leads, and some lyrics went a long way towards influencing the development of the genre.
  • Protest Song: "Five to One", "The Unknown Soldier" and "Dead Cats, Dead Rats".
    • Many of their other songs that aren't primarily protest songs nonetheless have significant elements of protest within them; perhaps the most notable example is the "What have we done to the earth?" section in "When the Music's Over".
  • Psychedelic Rock
  • Rock Me, Asmodeus: "My Wild Love"
  • Scare Chord: "I am the Lizard King. I can do anything." BLAAAM!
    • On a related note, "WAKE UP!"
  • Serial Killer: "Riders On The Storm"
  • Short Lived Big Impact: Jim Morrison in addition to being the lead singer of The Doors, he is widely regarded has having perfected the modern "rock star" image. Dead at age 27.
  • Shout-Out: "Runnin' Blues" is clearly a tribute to Otis Redding.
  • Significant Anagram: "Jim Morrison" == "Mr. Mojo Risin'" (L.A. Woman)
  • Something Blues: "Roadhouse Blues", "Shaman's Blues"
  • Something Completely Different:
    • 1969's The Soft Parade, which sounded totally different from anything the band had done before - or, for that matter, anything any band was doing at the time. "Tell All the People" is surprisingly optimistic and religious in outlook, while "Touch Me" features an intense saxophone solo by session musician Curtis Amy (John Densmore's latent jazz influences coming to the forefront at last). "Runnin' Blues" incorporates a Scotch-Irish country fiddle; the title track has a calypso percussionist.
    • Also "You Make Me Real" from Morrison Hotel, which is a surprisingly poppy, upbeat song with a "rink-a-lee-tink-a-bink" piano. Jerry Lee Lewis probably loved it.
  • Spoken Word in Music: "The killer awoke before dawn..." Also "Horse Latitudes", "Celebration of the Lizard" and An American Prayer. Morrison was fond of this in live performance as well. The band members have said that sometimes they dreaded what Morrison was going to say.
  • Surprisingly Gentle Song: "The Crystal Ship", "Yes, The River Knows", "Wishful Sinful", "You're Lost, Little Girl", "I Can't See Your Face In My Mind", several others.
  • Vocal Evolution: Heavy smoking and drinking took a toll on Morrison's voice towards the end. His voice is noticeably rougher on the L.A. Woman album.
  • Wild Child: Trope Namer.
  • Word Salad Lyrics: "The Soft Parade", among others.
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