Jim Morrison of The Doors: Rock and Roll Poet for a Generation
The year was 1970 and one of the hottest names in popular music was Jim Morrison of The Doors. Morrison and his group seemed to represent a generation in turmoil: young people who The year was 1970 and one of the hottest names in popular music was Jim Morrison of The Doors. Morrison and his group seemed to represent a generation in turmoil: young people who wanted to make a new world that looked and felt different from that of their parents. Rewind presents an interview with Jim Morrison a year before he died; an interview that is both thoughtful and earnest.CBC Radio has always tried, among other things, to reflect to its listeners the popular culture of the day. There have been many hosts of many shows who have talked to many guests. Some of these guests were big names. We have a pop culture icon for you today from the early 1970s, a musician whose music and voice still resonate. It's Jim Morrison of The Doors.
Jim Morrison was 26 years old when he appeared on the CBC Radio program Something to Say. He was at the height of his fame, had been charged with so called indecent exposure. Morrison was definitely the front man for the Doors, with the looks, the charisma and the depth that his fans craved. It must have been quite a coup getting him for an interview. It was May 1970 and he was awaiting the publication of a book of poetry called The Lords and The New Creatures. Morrison was a notoriously difficult interview. But CBC Radio's Tony Thomas convinced him to speak about not just his music but his his writing. He also invited him to reflect on youth culture and the state of the world.
Representative of his Generation
It's a serious and rather rambling interview; Morrison is soft spoken and earnest and Thomas tries really hard to understand his guest as a representative of his generation.
The interview aired on CBC Radio in May 1970. The following year, in July 1971, Morrison's body was found in a hotel room in Paris. Although there was never an autopsy, it is presumed that he died of a drug overdose.
One Week, Two Deaths
In fact, in the course of one week in July 1971 not only Jim Morrison, but anther very different icon of American music had died; Louis Armstrong. The CBC Radio program This is Robert Fulford, which ran between 1967 and 1973, was one of the arts and popular culture programs of its day. Think of Q, with Robert Fulford sitting in for Jian Ghomeshi. The program featured big names and covered big topics and events. We presented the discussion and music aired on July 12, 1971, just over a week after Jim Morrison died. Robert Fulford's guests were Jack Batten, music critic for the Globe and Mail, and Fred Landerl, and American free-lance journalist.