The person who introduced me to The Doors was a girl named Sharon. She was several grades ahead of me in school but had for some reason taken an interest in me. I was in love.
Knowing that I had a pretty good stereo system hidden in my bedroom, she had me transfer some of her Doors albums to cassette beginning with the 13 album. It had a nasty warp in it, so I had to take a penny to tonearm to make sure it wouldn’t skip. As the cassette machine whirred, I listened. I’d never heard music like this before. After 13 was finished, I worked on L.A. Woman, Strange Days, The Soft Parade and their self-titled debut. With every finished cassette, she told me I was “sweet,” which sent me into orbit.
I should point out that these taping sessions took a little longer than expected because after I finished 13, I made my own copy. Same thing with all the other albums. I’m reminded of this little bit of home-taping piracy (Relax: I later went out and bought my own copies of all these albums) by this site forwarded my way by Lee. It’s a post called “An Open Letter to 17 Year-old Boys Who Just Discovered the Doors.”
AN OPEN LETTER TO 17-YEAR-OLD BOYS WHO JUST DISCOVERED THE DOORS.
Well, this was probably unavoidable. You are about to think some very dumb stuff about poetry, women, and dead Native Americans. This is a tradition, or affliction, that has been passed down to at least three generations of 17-year-old white boys and then foisted upon 15-year-old-white girls for just as many decades— girls your own age are way past this shit, stick with the sophomores. You are going to abuse the word “shaman” in ways that will violate international torture conventions. You’re going to think that something important and meaningful is happening to you, even though you haven’t left your room for three days. You are going to sit at the feet of the master of total self-regard, one James Douglass Morrison, the “Lizard King,” and think yourself the Prince of Salamanders and heir to a throne carved from your own bullshit.
This will all end in merciful disillusionment.
I would like to think that you saw Apocalypse Now and encountered “The End” during the opening scene, and that this is just an unfortunate side effect of an otherwise positive event in your cultural development. It is much more likely that TBS is just playing that fucking Oliver Stone Doors movie over and over because they picked up the broadcast rights super cheap at some kind of film studio equivalent of the unintentionally humiliating garage sale. It was in a cardboard box next to Harvey Weinstein’s old spandex bicycle pants. But, however it came about, you now think an affected demeanor of slack-jawed ponderousness is the same thing as depth and that depth is the same thing as being sexually desirable and the only way out of this thickening forest of misconception is through. There’s no going around.
And it’s going to be a dark time. Not dark in the way you are thinking of dark. Not romantic, gothy, leather-trousers dark. More your own asshole dark.
There’s more. Keep reading.