Living with…The Doors…for a week
The Club Where Everybody Knows Your Name…but No Body wants to join you
When Amy Winehouse died tragically in July this year, we were reminded again of that rather fateful gathering known as the 27 Club.
The Club has arisen from the strange coincidence or curse that has beset a group of talented musicians over the years. They die in their 27th year. The first member to join was the influential blues player Robert Johnson in 1938 poisoned, maybe even by a jealous husband. In itself not surprising given his reputation.
He had to wait another thirty or so years before further members and then they came thick and fast. First came one of the Rolling Stones, Brian Jones, found at the bottom of his swimming pool in 1969. Then a year later one of rock’s all-time greatest guitarist Jimi Hendrix was found dead in his flat overdosed on sleeping pills. Within a month the first female member of the club joined in similar circumstances, when Janis Joplin overdosed on heroin in her flat. All 27.
My musical companion of the week, Jim Morrison of the Doors, joined the club in July 1971 found dead in a bathtub in a Paris apartment. Befitting of his air of mystery, there is little information beyond that, and he was buried in Paris without an autopsy fuelling any number of rumours that he may still be alive. His grave has, of course, become a strange rock memorial that must delight and frustrate the Parisien authorities.
And then stories of the club went quiet until two more recent new members. Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain took his own life in 1994 found in his flat by an electrician. Of course, earlier this year the most recent member joined with Amy Winehouse’s death in her flat.
A common theme for the majority of the 27 Club is that they died in the midst of their excesses, living the rock ‘high’ life and this was their downfall. The irony for Amy Winehouse is that one of the explanations provided is that she died of the detox coming off the high life…
Whichever way you look at it the 27 Club is not one with a queue for membership, merely an example of a macabre coincidence that ties together a group of talented musicians taken too early.
Jim Morrison’s Legs
Moving on from the rather morbid start to this week’s time with the Doors…
I’ve known of the Doors but particularly Jim Morrison since my college days when there was a short-lived band doing the rounds called Jim Morrison’s Legs. I can remember little of their music or even how they looked. I just remember the name which fuelled a healthy or unhealthy (depending on your outlook) obsession amongst girls with the great man’s tightly leather-clad legs. It has taken a further 30 years to move on in my knowledge of The Doors from the obvious two or three songs and an image of The Lizard King’s legs!
And I’ve not been disappointed by this week’s album – The Doors by The Doors. The opening to Light My Fire is surely one of the most uplifting moments in 60’s pop possibly only surpassed by Lily The Pink. That wonderful Hammond Organ sound that swirls through Light My Fire (and possibly twoddles a little too long on the extended album version) makes frequent appearances throughout. Soul Kitchen, Back Door Man and a cover of Brecht’s Alabama Song (Whisky Bar) are particular favourites. The latter is the coolest oompah song I’ve come across.
At times, The Doors can seem a little self-indulgent – I can’t be the only one who has listened to over 10 minutes of the The End, and wished it would do that…just end. But at the same time, that’s another reason to admire Jim Morrison – his lyrics are mostly poetic and intelligent, and he is trying to push the boundaries I suppose.
But at the end of it all, he did really just look so cool in leather trousers, so enjoy more in this clip of Light My Fire love
Glee Watch: Having now caught up with Glee Season 3, I can’t be alone in feeling that it lacks the continual stream of gleeful moments of the original season. However, that’s not to say it doesn’t have a few. The line of the season so far has to be Mike’s father to the principal – “An A minus is an Asian F.”
Musically, Blaine steals it all with a true old fashioned Glee moment with his rendition of Tom Jones’s Its Not Unusual. Sorry, but sometimes it’s the simple things that win hand’s down especially when accompanied with cheer leaders. An honourable mention for Britney’s cheerleader in leather routine – yet another Beyonce number apparently. But nothing memorable from the great divas of the show so far. And as to the first venture in to covering Coldplay…lets not go there.
And finally, am I alone in thinking that Quinn was less scary as a pink-haired punk than as the prissy neat blonde that she has again reverted back to? Maybe, I have to overcome my fear of Überblondes.
Twotes of the week
@BillBailey: sunbathing among the fallen leaves and conkers..
@ColinGPaterson Top moment at Harrison premiere> Reporter: “Did The Beatles inspire you as an artist?” Noel Gallagher: “Is that a serious question?”
@TedInJest: If you have trouble getting your children’s attention, just sit down and look comfortable. @Queen_UK: Just received one’s new iPhone with iOS5 and one’s Royal “iRule” app pre-installed.