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Classic Rock Q107 Remembers ‘The Doors’ Keyboardist Ray Manzarek [VIDEO]

Ray Manzarek, keyboardist and founding member of “The Doors” (1965-1973), is gone at 74.

Between 1962 and 1965, Manzarek was a cinematography student at UCLA, when he met film student Jim Morrison.  Less than two months after completing film school, and thinking that he and Morrison would never cross paths again, the two had a chance meeting on California’s Venice Beach.

The conversation quickly turned to Morrison’s songwriting, and as the story goes, the Doors were co-founded in that instance of time.   Manzarek found Guitarist Robby Krieger and drummer John Densmore at a transcendental meditation lecture.  Densmore later said “there wouldn’t be any Doors without Maharishi.”

Settling in to a dive called “The London Fog”, on the famed Sunset Strip in California, “The Doors” became the house band in ’66.  “The Doors” ended up getting the boot, but took the opportunity to perfect their sound, and on the day they were canned from “Fog”, the world renowned “Whiskey a Go Go” hired the group, where they shared billing with Van Morrison’s “Them”.

Manzarek, like too many other people, was courageously fighting cancer, when he died on May 20.

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