Friday, 3 July 2015

SMC | An Ode to the Lizard King

I'm not promoting them. I am not 'selling; them. I am not telling you to 'love them'. I am just wanting to share my experience as an avid listener of The Doors about my experience of them. You see, today marks the day in history when my artistic muse, Jim Morrison (lead Singer of The Doors) was found dead in the bathtub of his Paris apartment by his longtime girlfriend (and his Muse) Pamela Courson. Less than a year later I was born and as I always say, 'a few decades too late'. So how could he possibly be my muse if I wasn't even born yet? Let me tell you....(I encourage you to begin the You Tube video while you read on)

My first Door's experience (sad to say) was the silver screen when Val Kilmer pulled off a very convincing 'Jim Morrison' in the film titled 'The Doors'. At the time, my younger sister and I were immersing ourselves in our parents old record collections and listening to the likes of Buddy Holly, Patsy Cline (another fave!), The Momas and the Papas, The Beatles, and many more. So, pretty tame music so to speak. I remember wanting to know more about The Doors though and I think it was because my parents didn't own a copy of their music (I was always the family rebel). My mother greatly disliked them and called them 'drug addicted weirdos'. I have to have a chuckle at this because although my mother was verbally accurate in her assessment, they were bloody talented drug addicted weirdos in my opinion! My appetite for their music was intense just like their music and, at the time, the library was the only resource for information (internet wasn't quite as rampant to us yet). 

And so, I set out to learn all I could about them and listened as often as I could to their music throughout my College years as it helped me to create. At the time, I was going through the Graphic Design Program at Grant MacEwan (now University) College and when the hours grew late working on a project I would turn to The Doors to soothe me into a trance (with songs like The End) or pep me up (with songs like 'Light My Fire' and 'Love Street'). You see, I didn't need drugs - I just needed The Doors....specifically to Jim Morrison's powerful vocals. I literally owe my creativity to the man that fans and later, Media would label as 'The Lizard King' 

*side note: Jim Morrison wrote a poem called 'The Celebration of the Lizard' that first appeared on the sleeve of The Doors album 'Waiting for the Sun'. The poem contained the line: 'I am the Lizard King, I can do Anything'. Fans thought Morrison was referring to himself instead of another person whom he created as a the fictional Author of the song. The Nickname stuck, and, after a while, the band added music and the poem was performed several times live.

This excerpt is not about the life and death of Jim Morrison, it is my Ode to his Creativity as an Artist is why I am writing this piece. You see, at the time I began listening to The Doors, many changes were happening in my life as I was transitioning into adulthood and spreading my wings. The Doors' music just seemed like a perfect fit. To this day, I owe my insatiable musical appetite to them for that's when the journey truly began for me to become a writer, curiously exploring, listening to more music and understanding what was behind each song written for every song I heard. As we all know, there's a story in each song and how it comes to be and each one of us interpret it differently which is great. It's why artistry exists! But for me, as a writer for Artists, it intrigues me to want to know the artist as a whole because it gives me an even greater appreciation for their lyrics and why they were written to begin with. 

If I was asked today to sit at a table with anyone who has passed on so I could tell them how they greatly affected my life it would be something like this: My Mother, My Grandfathers, My Grandmother, My Aunts, My Uncle, My Cousin, Princess Diana, Audrey Hepburn, Mother Teresa, Robin Williams, Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline, Ian Curtis, Michael Hutchence, Jane Austen, Shakespeare, and.....Jim. One day, I will explain why, but for today, it's about Jim.

So you see, musically and quite literally, they (Specifically Jim) opened the Doors. 
For me, anyway.

Rest In Peace Jim this one's for you...

CA Marshall
Editor | Starlight Music Chronicles

The official Death Certificate of Jim Morrison - note the date on the bottom right in red 

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