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The Doors- Strange Days 55th anniversary- the late Ray Manzarek

The Doors  Strange Days  was released in September 1967 barely nine months after The Doors debut opened up a meteoric new star in the rock galaxy. The late band co-founder Ray Manzarek held the key to opening the timeless Doors legacy here In the Studio and, if anything, the tune stack is, to some, even more satisfying: “You’re Lost Little Girl”, “Love Me Two Times”; the first song singer Jim Morrison ever wrote, “Moonlight Drive”, with keyboard maven Ray Manzarek; “People Are Strange”; the second epic in less than a year, “When the Music’s Over”; and the ethereal title song with the underwater vocal, “Strange Days”. 

The Doors’ debut only nine months earlier remains more often written about, mostly because it was so startlingly fully formed and sounding unlike anything else. But Strange Days,  peaking at #3 on Billboard‘s Top 200 Sales chart and eventually ranked at #409 on Rolling Stone magazine’s Top 500 Albums of All Time, arguably is an even stronger second effort than the first, with eight tracks of fuller arrangements instead of just four, and a wealth of A-list songs.

Strange Days  by The Doors was uncanny in capturing seismic changes already underway in America, including the escalation of the Viet Nam War and the tension from racial inequities about to boil over back home, which would signal the end to the all-too-brief Summer of Love in 1967.  –Redbeard