Jim Morrison

RAY MANZAREK ‘Doors’ Founding Member DEAD AT 74

Ray Manzarek, the keyboardist who was a founding member of The Doors, has died. He was 74.

Publicist Heidi Robinson-Fitzgerald says in a news release that Manzarek died Monday at the RoMed Clinic in Rosenheim, Germany, surrounded by his family. He had been stricken by bile duct cancer.

Manzarek founded The Doors after meeting then-poet Jim Morrison in California. The band went on to become one of the most successful rock ‘n’ roll acts to emerge from the 1960s and continues to resonate with fans decades after Morrison’s death brought the band to an end.

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Morrison And Winehouse Were Destined To Die Young, Alice Cooper Says

Famed Gothic singer Alice Cooper is convinced he survived rock ‘n’ roll excess because he wasn’t doomed to become part of the Forever 27 club, and always knew when it was time to stop partying.

The School’s Out singer insists he was a “lightweight drunk” compared to pal Jim Morrison, who like Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix and Amy Winehouse, lived hard and died young – at the age of 27.

He tells Rolling Stone, “Nobody could talk Jim Morrison out of dying. I was a drunk, but I was a lightweight compared to him, and nobody could talk him out of where he was going. Jim was gonna go there and that was it. Same with Amy. I don’t think anybody could’ve talked Amy out of where she was going.

“The true artists are always out on a limb. They’re always the ones that are just maybe gonna die.

“I had to wake up one morning and throw up blood and realize that was a pretty good sign God was saying, ‘That’s about enough out of you. You could still rock & roll, but you’re gonna have to do it a different way.’

“I was dying. Doctor said, ‘You got two more weeks before you join Jimi, Jim and all the boys.’ I said, ‘I want to stick around and make records.’ So I had to stop. Same with Iggy (Pop), same with Lou (Reed), same with Steven (Tyler) and Joe (Perry). They’re here because they got in the crossroads and made the right choice. If not, we would’ve been dead, all of us.

“I think the early guys, the Jim Morrisons, the Janis Joplins, just did not want to see 30. 27 was the expiration date… and I guess they said, ‘That’s too close to 30, I’m just gonna burn out.'”