Ray Manzarek death: Band members pay tribute
The keyboard player, who had battled bile duct cancer for many years, died in a clinic on Monday in Rosenheim, Germany, with his wife and brothers at his bedside.
He formed the band with lead singer Jim Morrison in 1965 after a chance meeting.
The often controversial band found international fame in the 1960s with hits such as The End, Break on Through (To the Other Side) and Hello, I Love You.
They sold more than 100 million albums worldwide and Manzarek became one of the best-known keyboardists of his era; his artistry colouring tracks such as Riders on the Storm and Light my Fire.
The Doors’ drummer John Densmore yesterday paid tribute to Manzarek, saying he felt “totally in sync” with his “musical brother”.
“There was no keyboard player on the planet more appropriate to support Jim Morrison’s words,” he added.
Guitarist Robby Krieger, who continued to play with Manzarek following Morrison’s death in Paris in July 1971, said he was “deeply saddened”.
Tributes were also paid by Bill Siddons, the band’s manager in the 1960s, who said Manzarek’s death was a “tremendous loss” to musical culture.
He said: “He understood what Jim’s talent was, and he put the band together to make it work. The Doors really had a huge impact, and still do, on our musical culture.”
Manzarek, who was of Polish descent, was born and raised in south Chicago. He studied cinematography at the University of California in Los Angeles, where he first met fellow film student Morrison.
He took classical piano lessons as a child, which later contributed to the fusion style of The Doors’ music.