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Ray Manzarek – 9 facts about the musician

Interesting facts emerge...

Ray Manzarek: 9 curious facts

A wonderful pianist, an outstanding composer and a very good singer - Ray Manzarek became the magician of the legendary band of the 60s "The Doors", giving its unique sound magic keyboards ... We invite you to recall the most interesting facts from the life of a great musician!

Rock 'n' roll beat basketball

Ray Manzarek
Ray Manzarek

As a teenager, Ray became seriously interested in basketball and even became famous among his acquaintances as a very gifted player. The guy wanted to take an attacking role - to become a center, well, or, in a very extreme case, a power forward. But, as often happens, Manzarek's coach had his own opinion on this matter: the 16-year-old had a choice - either he agrees to the role of point guard, or does not play basketball at all ... Ray could not stand ultimatums, and, as you might guess , left the team. Being already a well-known musician, Manzarek admitted that today hardly anyone would know about such an illustrious band as The Doors, if not for that ultimatum statement of the coach...

During the playoff with Morrison, Ray meditated on the beach

Ray Manzarek
Ray Manzarek

Yes, the first acquaintance of Ray and Morrison really happened within the walls of the California Film College. However, this significant day for the history of music did not end: the meeting was repeated on Venice Beach. According to Manzarek himself, Morrison was walking along the beach when he saw Ray meditating and hurried over to him. Ray noted that Jim, who grew long hair and lost 30 feet, looked like Michelangelo's "David". Then, singing to Ray a short excerpt from his own "Moonlight Drive", Morrison struck Manzarek to the core ... The listener was so impressed that he immediately decided to form a group!

The musician played the bass lines with his left hand

Ray Manzarek Min
Ray Manzarek Min

During the performance of a little-known band in one of the nightclubs in Los Angeles, Manzarek spotted a luxurious bass on keyboards that belonged to another team. Then the musician came up with the idea to attach the find to his instrument and thus play bass lines with his left hand, and solos and organ riffs with his right. So Ray found a great alternative that allowed him to avoid inviting a fifth member to the group. As Manzarek himself later said, the quartet composition "makes The Doors a four-sided diamond, and not a diabolical pentagram."

Co-author of a number of grandiose masterpieces of the group

Ray Manzarek
Ray Manzarek

Ray has contributed to such acclaimed The Doors tracks as "Break On Through (To The Other Side)", "Light My Fire", "Love Me Two Times", "Riders On The Storm" and more...

The Doors' most famous song is inspired by Bach and John Coltrane

Ray Manzarek
Ray Manzarek

Brought up in a harsh Chicago environment, Manzarek knew all the charms of the blues to perfection ... It is worth noting that his "impeccable musical training" included classical music as well. At the same time, Ray himself has always positioned himself as a jazz artist ... As a result, all these influences found an organic interweaving in the beautiful 7-minute "Light My Fire". Interestingly, the original baroque keyboard intro was inspired by Johann Sebastian Bach, and the solo was based on a track from My Favorite Things, a record by saxophonist John Coltrane.

"Not your typical rock star"

Ray Manzarek
Ray Manzarek

Unlike the flamboyant star Jim Morrison, who was widely known for his rebellious antics and out of the ordinary, Manzarek's persona was the complete opposite, completely uncharacteristic of rock stars. The musician, with a healthy sense of irony, endured the collapse of the greatest band in his life, lived a long and very happy life with Dorothy Fujikawa, a student at the same University of California, with whom they lived hand in hand until Ray's death ... One of the journalists said:

“Ray was a very attractive, harmonious, and most importantly, a lively person ... An eternally thoughtful intellectual in glasses, who perceived rock music in exactly the same way as he did all his life - as a way of self-expression and a hurricane of vivid sensations!”

Manzarek became an indisputable authority for the punk rockers of the 80s

Ray Manzarek
Ray Manzarek

And yes, some of these musicians even attracted Ray to co-create. Manzarek's piggy bank contains interesting punk works created with Echo & the Bunnymen and Iggy Pop.

Amazing Writer

Ray Manzarek
Ray Manzarek

On the threshold of the 2000s, Manzarek’s memoirs entitled “Light My Fire: My Life with The Doors” were published, which immediately gained the status of bestsellers ... A few years later, the musician brought to the public the novel “The Poet in Exile”, which tells a rock hero like Morrison who fakes his own death and returns decades later. Curiously, the creation of Ray's work was prompted by urban legends that Jim was supposedly alive. The third novel was "Snake Moon" - a terrible story about the Civil War in the States and ghosts ...

Manzarek's cause of death was cancer

Ray Manzarek
Ray Manzarek

The cult musician died in May 2013, in a clinic in the German town of Rosenheim. Ray Manzarek has lost a bitter battle with bile duct cancer. Until the last moment, his relatives were next to the musician: his wife Dorothy, two brothers, a son and three grandchildren.

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