The Doors’ Jim Morrison – Rock Idol Or Cursed Poet?

The Doors’ Jim Morrison – Rock Idol Or Cursed Poet?

Posted 9 Mar 2020
jim morrison, the doors
Jim Morrison circa 1970. Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images.

In 1978, seven years after The Doors’ lead singer Jim Morrison died, the band’s remaining members reunited to craft backing tracks for the infamous poetry recordings he had made almost a decade earlier in 1969 and 1970. An American Prayer is a tapestry of audio made up of music and spoken word recorded by Morrison and The Doors, as well as dialogue from Morrison's 1969 film HWY: An American Pastoral and snippets from jam sessions.

The list of platinum-selling spoken word albums is a pretty short one! Making it fair to say, An American Prayer more than earns Jim Morrison his place among rock's all-time greatest poets.

Jim Morrison, Music By The Doors | An American Prayer

The instrumental backing provided by bandmates John Densmore, Robby Krieger and Ray Manzarek – making this in effect The Doors’ 9th and final album – creates an eerie and sympathetic mood, breathing life into Morrison's striking lyrical imagery that flows from him in an endless stream of consciousness: poetic, visionary and, even in the context of 60s counter-culture, decidedly avant-garde. 

An American Prayer is the type of album listened to alone at night, when one can devote their undivided attention to the twisted musings and snake-charmer rock. Along with the poetry, tracks like "Peace Frog" and "Wasp (Texas Radio and the Big Beat)" provide a welcome air of Doors familiarity, and the killer live version of "Roadhouse Blues" in the middle of the album, makes it a must for Doors fans. Check out the catalogue here

Another must for fans and collection completists alike is this 50th-anniversary reissue of The Doors’ fourth studio album, The Soft Parade, which became their fourth straight Top Ten album when it was first released on July 18, 1969. Despite featuring one of the group’s biggest hits – “Touch Me” – it remains the most-polarizing record of The Doors’ career thanks to the complex brass and string arrangements that embellish several tracks.

The Doors | “Touch Me” [Doors Only Mix]

This is a breakout LP was originally released as part of the Soft Parade 50th Anniversary Box Set and is now available as a standalone vinyl edition here

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