Ray Manzarek Founding Member of "The Doors" Dies at 74

Derek Kademian

by Derek Kademian

Published May 21, 2013

Ray Manzarek, co-founder to The Doors died yesterday, May 20, after a long battle with bile duct cancer in Rosenheim Germany.

Born Raymond Daniel Manczarek, Jr in Chicago Illinois, he played basketball as a teenager and then went on to study cinematography at UCLA in California from 1962-1965. It would be at this time where he would meet Jim Morrison by chance on Venice Beach California. After meeting drummer John Densmore and Robby Krieger at a Transcendental Meditation lecture, the four formed The Doors, making Manzarek a co-founder with Morrison.

Ray Manzarek (left) Jim Morrison (right)

Robby Krieger stated, "I was deeply saddened to hear about the passing of my friend and bandmate Ray Manzarek today...I'm just glad to have been able to have played Doors songs with him for the last decade. Ray was a huge part of my life and I will always miss him."

Aside from being occasionally overshadowed by Morrison, his legendary style gave The Doors the extra push that made them one of the greatest bands of the decade. He played a major role on the incredibly successful songs, "Break on Through to the Other Side", "Light My Fire", "Hello, I Love You" and essentially served the role of a bassist.

When The Doors disbanded in 1973 because of the death of Morrison, Manzarek went on to perform on multiple projects with Phillip Glass, Echo & The Bunnymen, X, Iggy Pop and Weird Al-Yankovic. He also sporadically released solo albums throughout his career as well as two albums with his band Nite City. His last collaboration was for The Doors reunion which was for the Re-Generation Music Project documentary where he worked with EDM artist Skrillex for "Breakn' a Sweat".

Ray Manzarek, Skrillex, Robby Krieger (left to right)

Check out this playlist of Manzarek's most notable performances.

Iggy Pop Skrillex The Doors Weird Al Yankovic
Blues Rock British Rock Classic Rock Psychedelic
Send Feedback
recommended music

Hand-Picked Music for Your Taste

Follow artists, discover new music, and personalize your music experience.
Registration and login will only work if you allow cookies. Please check your settings and try again.

Web Analytics