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John Densmore Discusses the Band’s Famous Sound and Decision Not to Feature a Bassist

the doors

Legendary drummer John Densmore recently talked about the Doors’ legacy and the way in which the quartet managed to find their highly recognizable sound.

Densmore appeared on that That Jamieson Show to promote his latest book, The Seekers. The drummer says that while Jim Morrison’s poetry and charisma are largely to thank for the group’s enduring appeal, a lot of credit has to be given to the other band member’s work ethic.

The Doors created a unique sound. Numerous bands across generations have cited them as influence. Densmore thinks that the group’s diverses array of influences played an important part in shaping their sonic expression. Jazz, flamenco, folk, blues and poetry were among the group’s varied artistic interests.

Finally, John Densmore talked about the band’s decision not to feature a bass player for much of their career. The group generally played without bass guitar accompaniment, with the most famous exception being on their final studio album, L.A. Woman.

The drummer says that keyboardist Ray Manzarek’s natural abilities allowed them to play as a quartet. Manzarek could play the bass parts with his left hand. Also, he contributed lead organ lines, as well as backing vocals.

Although only originally active from 1965 to 1971, The Doors left an indelible mark on rock music and continue to be honored by numerous musicians until the present day.

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