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Monday, May 20, 2013
Ray Manzarek, founding member of The Doors, dies
Ray Manzarek, the keyboardist who was a founding member of The Doors, has died. He was 74.
Publicist Heidi Robinson-Fitzgerald said in a news release that Manzarek died Monday at the RoMed Clinic in Rosenheim, Germany, surrounded by his family. He had been stricken by bile duct cancer.
Manzarek founded The Doors after meeting then-poet Jim Morrison in California. The band went on to become one of the most successful rock 'n' roll acts to emerge from the 1960s and continues to resonate with fans decades after Morrison's death brought the band to an end. The Doors sold more than 100 million albums worldwide on hits like "Hello, I Love You," "Riders on the Storm," "Light My Fire," and "Break On Through to the Other Side."
Manzarek, a Chicago native, continued to remain active in music after Morrison's 1971 death. He briefly tried to hold the band together by serving as vocalist, but eventually the group fell apart. He played in other bands over the years, produced other acts, became an author and worked on films.
The Doors were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Manzarek is among the most notable keyboard players in rock history. His lead-instrument work with the band at a time when the guitar often dominated added a distinct end-times flavor that matched Morrison's often out there imagery and persona.