The Doors have reached mythical status and with every passing decade they gain an insurgence of new young fans. Idolizing the front man Jim Morrison is something every new generation of rock and art fans do at some point. Jim Morrison seems to be the one rock legend that truly embodied what it meant to be a Rock and Roll star: Drugs, Sex and Rock and Roll, but what really holds fans attention besides his outlandish behavior and untimely death is the duality of Mr. Morrison. Yes he was a rebel who rejected all authority but his rejection was steeped in intellect, theory and contemplation not a childish automatic reaction to control but a mature analysis of existential existence.
The 1991 Oliver Stone film many have seen will throw this half of the dichotomous division out the window and paint Morrison solely as an insane madman. Jerry Hopkins and Danny Sugerman’s book will paint the picture of a more sane madman. Though there are large amounts of hero worship (Sugerman worked for The Doors as a teen) prevalent in the book, both authors in the aferword admit after doing extensive research and numerous interviews they both came back liking Jim Morrison a little less. The mythical image is stripped away and a true nuanced idiosyncratic artist is left standing, flawed as any man. His genius (a poet film student turned rock-theater rock star) is almost overshadowed by his strange behavior and self harming habits.
This book is a best seller for a reason and is a must read for any rock fan let alone Doors fan. Any artist that is up and coming no matter what genre or avenue of art they are in can take away a lot from this book, from how to construct the proper image, manipulate the press, conjure up controversy and control (and lose control) of an audience.