Densmore, Krieger Bury Hatchet With Ray Manzarek Tribute
John Densmore and Robby Krieger were best friends when they were in the Doors, but then they started suing each other and their relationship turned sour. After more than a decade of animosity, they’re reconnecting and may play a tribute to their former bandmate Ray Manzarek, who died of cancer in May.
Densmore recently published ‘The Doors Unhinged,’ which chronicles his feud with the Doors’ surviving members over copyrights, selling songs for commercials and the use of the Doors name on the road. That’s mostly settled now — Densmore won his battle to prevent Krieger and Manzarek from touring as the Doors — and the drummer had some closure with Manzarek before he passed away in Germany last month.
In an interview with Rolling Stone, Densmore says the band didn’t need the money that badly. “The Doors aren’t billionaires, but we have deep pockets,” he said. “I know that Ray and Robby, like me, have a nice house and a couple of groovy cars, so I’m going to veto this stuff. If they were struggling, it might be different.”
Densmore’s book opens with a scene from 1968, in which Jim Morrison is furious that the band sold ‘Light My Fire’ to Buick for commercial use while he was away. Densmore says that memory is what drove him to protect the band’s music.
“If he flips out over ‘Come on, Buick, light my fire,’ what does that mean about his caring for the whole catalog, everything we represented?” Densmore said. “I’m not going to forget that.”
Now the torn relationship seems to be mending. “I said to Robby a few weeks ago in an e-mail, ‘Let’s have our musical reunion for Ray. Let’s play some Doors songs at the Whisky or Wiltern [in Los Angeles]‘,” Densmore sais. “I’d like to break the ice that way. It should happen pretty soon.”