Happy birthday, Jim Morrison, you drunk Lizard King you! You would have turned 65 today and looked even more ridiculous than you did on the cover of L.A. Woman if you survived that junk that Pamela hooked you up with in Paris.
I must tell you that I listened to The Soft Parade about a month ago and it’s a major piece of shit! You probably knew that…or maybe you were too drunk to notice…because who would allow a turd like “Touch Me” appear on anything?
I know it was a big hit for you an all, but let’s be honest: It’s a sub-par Robby Krieger tune with top 40 aspirations written all over it and it was committed to tape while you were receiving a blowjob.
I don’t know about you Jim, but I like to concentrate while I’m getting a blowjob, and I’m sure as hell not going to be able to deliver a decent vocal performance while my girl’s got my dick in her mouth.
It’s about priorities.
And while we’re at it, let’s acknowledge that Strange Days is essentially a collection of leftovers from the first album, which makes it a second-rate record by design.
But this isn’t about critically dismantling the Doors catalog. It’s about you. It is, after all, your birthday.
I still remember the years when I looked up to you. I read No One Here Gets Out Alive about a million times, bought An American Prayer on vinyl, which, in turn, somehow convinced me that you were merely a misunderstood poet.
In college, I learned that real poets take their entire life experience into consideration for their collected works, not just some random road trip with the family that happened to stumble upon a car wreck, unfortunately transporting Native Americans. And we’ve all got issues with the folks. The fact that your Dad was not the most supportive or attentive parent is nothing new and certainly doesn’t make you a poet. From what I understand, even Fred Durst had it rough growing up and no one is mistaking him for Rimbaud.
Despite their faults, your folks did provide you with the opportunity to go to college and study film. Are you kidding? Your major was film?! That hints that things weren’t so bad at home and that much of your inner pain was somewhat self-manufactured, preparing for an inevitable role that just happened to manifest itself in the form of a singer for a rock band instead of a film director.
In either case, this story has Hollywood written all over it and your upbringing has white suburban guilt all over the storyline too. That doesn’t provide you with an excuse to be a drunk with a history of very lazy prose and even lazier musical output. A real artist wouldn’t just sock it to Ed Sullivan, they would stand up to the record company and say “You know what? We’re not ready with that album yet. We’re going to go back to work and concentrate on getting together some really decent material.” By my count, that only happened three times: the first album, Morrison Hotel (when everyone was questioning your shtick) and LA Woman (which, on some parts, even sounds phoned in).
To be fair, there’s a few lines that you wrote that I dig. I’m just wondering, based on the track record of your musical output, how motivated you were when you wrote some of it. Were there lines that you just slopped together as you did during The Soft Parade? Was there passages written while Pamela schlurped your cock? Did that blowjob from Nico inspire the idea for The Celebration Of The Lizard?
Your death, which I now know isn’t as “romantic” as reported earlier, reeks of rock and roll cliché. Paris turned out to be less of an inspiration than you originally thought and, in your self-loathing, you allowed your junkie girlfriend to take you down a road of self-medication, with disastrous results as we learned.
So happy birthday, Jim. You were provided a lucky break, but your spoiled work ethic and selfish desires gave you an early checkout. There were enough dramatic arcs in your life to provide an easily embellished story, but it’s intriguing to a fault. Those who end up learning more about you soon discover how positively normal you really were. And the cautionary tale that your death provided also shows us how much more you could have been.
More like snake oil salesman and screenplay writer.