I’ve taken a break from posting Rockin’ Friday tunes lately, not for lack of supply of great Rock songs that kids will also like. But rather, I’ve been stuck on a few songs lately and haven’t exposed the Little Dude, my primary test audience, to many new tunes lately. But this week is an exception, for better or worse.
Ray Manzarek died this week at the age of 74. Casual music fans are probably more familiar with his infinitely more famous bandmate who died 40+ years ago, Jim Morrison. But it was Manzarek’s revolutionary organ playing in the late 1960s and early ‘70s that gave The Doors their rhythm and framework for composition. Though not a “Jam Band”, so to speak, they definitely dabbled in exploratory music and Ray was the leader of that, in my opinion.
It was hard to pick a song that featured exemplary Ray Manzarek organ playing, because he was such an integral part of the band. But after debating options like Riders on the Storm, where he made his instrument replicate the falling rain, I settled on Light on Fire. A #1 hit in 1967, Light My Fire, features incredible Manzarek playing throughout; especially the intro which he said was inspired by the work of Bach. Clocking in at over 7 minutes long, the song goes through several ups and downs which lead to incredible crescendos by the whole band. No one did it better on the organ, Ray. You’ll be missed.
Here’s a version of the classic Light My Fire. RIP, Ray Manzarek.
What's your favorite Doors' tune?