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Old 09-04-2019, 02:59 PM
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What Did You Learn From Jim Morrison's


A) Lyrics

B) Interviews

When I say lyrics, I meant what did you learn from Jim after reading them. I'm not very good at deciphering lyrics, especially his. I listen to them as music, and mishear lyrics all the time, and even when I read them, I'm usually lost. And I've been a HUGE fan since middle school. Sometimes I think people might read too much - sometimes you like a certain rhyme, or how certain words sound. Maybe it was a mood at that particular moment, or something you think others need to hear.

Unfortunately, there aren't many interviews of Jim, but I think his first Doors biography summed it up well.

"I'm interested in anything about revolt, disorder, chaos, especially activity that appears to have no meaning. It seems to me to be the road toward freedom."

Alcohol does affect people, but he got arrested for being drunk in 1963, stealing a policeman's hat. I think the average fan just will say "drugs" or "booze", which is usually too easy. I remember reading from one of The Doors that his drinking went up because he couldn't sleep. Maybe he just wanted escape? He once said how he drank so he could talk to a**holes..

What about before booze? He was always anti-authority, and I think more emphasis should be on his upbringing, and especially his father. He didn't even see him (or his mother) after the age of 21, broke all contact (unusual for even dysfunctional families), was essentially homeless, and always seemed to poke authority, especially the police. He'd miss so many shows, and wouldn't even play "the game" early on. In his last audio interview he admits "I see myself as an intelligent, sensitive human, with the soul of a clown which forces me to blow it at the most important moments."

I'm guessing fame might have been another form of gasoline. Perhaps he thought "I'm still not happy, despite .....". Again, I could revert to his not being taken too seriously as a poet, but what about before that? I think he might have been impressionable, based on those he read, and their lives, Rimbaud for example. Living inside his head constantly? An imagination can probably take you far, especially for someone who grew up with so many books, all that fantasy, all the possibilities, and maybe a letdown.

C) If you can think of anything else, maybe his journal writings, "the times" (beatnik and hippie) or some influence something I didn't mention, etc..
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Old 09-04-2019, 03:19 PM
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Learn? Not a damn thing. But Morrison is one of the few rock lyricists of the time whose work often stands on its own as poetry.
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Old 09-04-2019, 05:01 PM
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Into this world we're thrown
Like a dog without a bone

There's a killer on the road
His brain is squirmin' like a toad
Take a long holiday
Let your children play

Yep, a regular Yeats he was.
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Old 09-04-2019, 05:13 PM
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Jim Morrison's lyrics alternate between simple pop lyrics and vaguely mystical-sounding gibberish.
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Old 09-04-2019, 06:20 PM
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And as such are "better" than 99% of the drivel that has been passed off as "poetry" the last century or so.

Not a hill I'm willing to die on. But I was there, and I remember.
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Old 09-04-2019, 07:25 PM
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I'm not impressed, he was a drugged out guy in his early 20s. His lyrics weren't too profound.
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Old 09-04-2019, 07:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acsenray View Post
Jim Morrison's lyrics alternate between simple pop lyrics and vaguely mystical-sounding gibberish.
This is my feeling, too. I like abstract lyrics that often sound good (in terms of prosody) and create unexpected imagery and connections without having obvious meaning behind them, but his never did anything for me.
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Old 09-04-2019, 08:32 PM
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I was a huge fan in middle school too. We played the first two albums to death while immersed in our homemade "light shows", rebelling against society from the safety of Bob's basement.
But I hope, like I did, you find better writers that "speak to you".

Can't leave without a quip. My kid was listening to the Doors, and wondered what all the Jim Morrison lyrics and Lizard King hype was about. I told him about the 60s and our youthful infatuation with his lyrics.

Then I said that dying young was a brilliant career move for him. This way Jim Morrison will be remembered as a young rebel. But his last months show he was just about to end up like Pudgy Elvis, playing Vegas all alone, with a show called "No, Really, I AM The Motherfukkin' Lizard King! 8 and 10 pm, Buffet and Rail Drinks Included"
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Old 09-04-2019, 10:03 PM
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And as such are "better" than 99% of the drivel that has been passed off as "poetry" the last century or so.

Not a hill I'm willing to die on. But I was there, and I remember.
Jim Morrison lived in the 20th century, a century that included poets like William Carlos Williams, E. E. Cummings, Charles Bukowski, Allan Ginsberg, W. H Auden, T. S. Eliot, Robert Frost, Pablo Neruda, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Yeats, Dylan Thomas ...

There was plenty of real poetry being written when Jim Morrison dripped out of community college to get drunk on a beach and impress young girls by randomly throwing together vogue references to philosophy and art in order to sound deep.

The Doors made a few catchy pop records, but that stuff isn’t comparable to the work of skilled poets who took their art seriously.
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Old 09-04-2019, 11:15 PM
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A) He was a crap poet

B) He was a dick
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Old 09-05-2019, 04:35 AM
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Nick Cave is what Jim Morrison failed to be. Survived heroin too.
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Old 09-05-2019, 05:31 AM
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I think he was a relatively smart guy, and pretty well aware that he was playing a character. Here's an excerpt from when he was interviewed by Howard Smith:

“You know, that’s something that really bothers me. What’s wrong with being fat? That’s what I want to know. Why is it so onerous to be fat? I don’t see anything wrong with fat. You know? I remember when I used to weigh 185 pounds. I was the same height that I now am: 185 pounds.

And I was going to college, and I had this food ticket at the cafeteria. And the cafeteria food is mainly all based on starch. You know, it’s cheap food, right? And so I don’t know what it was — I just felt like if you missed your meal, I figured, well, I was getting screwed, right? if I missed a meal, I just blew it. So I’d get up at 6:30 every morning just to make breakfast. Eggs and grits and sausages and toast. Milk. Then I’d go do a few classes and I’d make it in there for lunch. Mashed potatoes, ahh. Every now and then, they’d put a little piece of meat in something, you know? And then I’d go to a few more classes and then I’d go to dinner and it was more mashed potatoes.

And so about three months later, I was 185 pounds, and you know what? I felt so great. I felt like a tank, you know? I felt like a large mammal, a big beast. When I’d move through the corridors or across the lawn, I just feel like I could knock anybody out of my way. I was solid, man. It’s terrible to be thin and wispy because, you know, you’d get knocked over by a strong wind or something. Fat is beautiful.”


The music? It's fine. Never felt the need to listen to a Doors album compulsively or anything, but they're fine.
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Old 09-05-2019, 07:42 AM
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Short and lucid interview with Jim Morrison on Canadian Broadcasting with Tony Thomas
https://youtu.be/dadQebCe6N0

Last edited by MortSahlFan; 09-05-2019 at 07:42 AM.
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Old 09-05-2019, 08:48 AM
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Jim Morrison lived in the 20th century, a century that included poets like William Carlos Williams, E. E. Cummings, Charles Bukowski, Allan Ginsberg, W. H Auden, T. S. Eliot, Robert Frost, Pablo Neruda, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Yeats, Dylan Thomas ...
Not to mention dozens of major poets who wrote in languages other than English...
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Un cœur où chaque mot a laissé son entaille
Et d’où ma vie s’égoutte au moindre mouvement
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Old 09-05-2019, 08:55 AM
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Not to mention dozens of major poets who wrote in languages other than English...
Yes, them too!
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Old 09-05-2019, 08:56 AM
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Ooops, I didn't see Neruda in your list.

So I guess : Guillaume Apollinaire, Pierre Reverdy, Paul Valéry, Rainer Maria Rilke, Saint-John Perse and Henri Michaux .
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À la place où la foudre a frappé trop souvent
Un cœur où chaque mot a laissé son entaille
Et d’où ma vie s’égoutte au moindre mouvement
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Old 09-05-2019, 10:08 AM
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That you must never go down to the end of the town if you don't go down with me.
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Old 09-05-2019, 10:35 AM
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That you must never go down to the end of the town if you don't go down with me.
Not sure how many are going to bite, Annie, but I loved it.

I have a rambling story under

C - other - Jim Morrison's grave.

Back at the end of the '80s, Mrs Trep and I were staying in Paris at a friend's apartment. He took us out to Père Lachaise Cemetery - where Jim is buried, of course. I don't suppose much has changed - it's a place of pilgrimage amongst the graves of the great and the good, on whose last resting places directions have been written, viz: {arrow pointing} Jim, 75m.

Anyway, back at the apartment, our friend, who had recently been to the States, had a couple of fascinating books about something called The Straight Dope. I was very rude - I read both of them cover-to-cover while we were staying there.

Subsequently, whenever I was in a second-hand bookshop (never published in the UK, so far as I am aware), I would take a look for them just on the off chance. When the internet was invented and I got access, I took a look for them there and - wowee, a website! So that's one thing I learned (kind of) from Jim. And here I am.

j
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Old 09-05-2019, 10:49 AM
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Not sure how many are going to bite, Annie, but I loved it.
Thanks! I was actually surprised nobody beat me to it.

For those who did not get it click here

(And thanks to my older brother James, who greatest legacy to me was his love of early 1960's folk music. Which was at the top before those four lads from Liverpool took the music scene over.)

Last edited by Annie-Xmas; 09-05-2019 at 10:50 AM.
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Old 09-05-2019, 10:51 AM
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I learned that, apparently, fat, drunk, and stupid IS a way to go through life, albeit in the short term.
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Old 09-05-2019, 11:20 AM
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Combinatorics from The Crystal Ship:

"A thousand girls, a thousand thrills
A million ways to spend your time"

|A| * |B| = | A x B |

Last edited by ftg; 09-05-2019 at 11:21 AM.
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Old 09-05-2019, 11:33 AM
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....

Last edited by BubbaDog; 09-05-2019 at 11:34 AM. Reason: never mind - don't want to TS
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Old 09-05-2019, 11:36 AM
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I’ve learned that he was a pretentious twatwaffle but not nearly as pretentious as he was portrayed in that awful movie. I still like a lot of the music.
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Old 09-05-2019, 12:23 PM
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The Doors are on a short list of ‘60s performers, along with Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin, who I liked just fine when I was in high school and college, and haven’t listened to in 30 years.

OTOH, I regularly break out volumes of Yeats, Williams, Rilke, Frost, Larkin, Plath, Apollinaire, etc., and dig them just as much as when I was a fairly strong young rose.
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Old 09-05-2019, 12:51 PM
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Morrison's lyrics - most good song lyrics, to be honest - are meant to evoke emotion. I am not sure you're supposed to learn anything from them; you're supposed to FEEL something from them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Loach
I’ve learned that he was a pretentious twatwaffle but not nearly as pretentious as he was portrayed in that awful movie. I still like a lot of the music.
I mean, you couldn't be the way Morrison was portrayed in the movie and accomplish anything. Morrison really could sing, was bright, very well read, and knew a little bit about writing music. Until he really fell apart he was a productive member of a group that churned our six studio albums in five years, all of them pretty good.

Morrison absolutely was a wild guy, but the superhuman level of it is to a large extent a creation of Ray Manzarek. I don't think it's than Manzarek was lying, I think he just worshiped Morrison.
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Old 09-05-2019, 05:16 PM
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That you must never go down to the end of the town if you don't go down with me.
Excellent!
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Old 09-05-2019, 05:31 PM
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I can't say that I learned anything from Jim, but I can say that he, Robbie, Ray and John made a lot of music that I really love.

From the opening of Break On Through to the final fade out of Riders On The Storm, The Doors created a unique lyrical and musical world, one that I go back to often. One of my best Doors memories is driving through LA and up the coast through Malibu on an almost traffic-free Christmas morning with The Very Best Of The Doors playing. it was just the perfect soundtrack for that time and place.
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Old 09-05-2019, 06:08 PM
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He'd miss so many shows, and wouldn't even play "the game" early on. In his last audio interview he admits "I see myself as an intelligent, sensitive human, with the soul of a clown which forces me to blow it at the most important moments."
Nah. If he blew it at the most important moments nobody would have heard of him. I have experience with this.

Let's see...I learned that 'L.A. Woman' was one of my favorite songs to play drums for in bar bands in the '80s. Epic.

I like the phrase "Roman wilderness of pain" and 'The End' as the opening for Apocalypse Now! is probably my favorite beginning of a movie ever.
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Old 09-05-2019, 08:15 PM
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With rare exceptions (Shelley, Keats, Mozart, Dylan) one is not as brilliant or profound in their mid-20s as we'd like to believe. Even Alan Ginsberg didn't write Howl until he was 30.

Jim Morrison was not Shelley, Keats, Mozart of Dylan.
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Old 09-05-2019, 08:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MortSahlFan View Post
Short and lucid interview with Jim Morrison on Canadian Broadcasting with Tony Thomas
https://youtu.be/dadQebCe6N0
That’s wonderful - thanks. Insights about computers, women and society, and much else.
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Old 09-06-2019, 04:53 AM
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That’s wonderful - thanks. Insights about computers, women and society, and much else.

You're welcome. It's a fine interview.
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