March 15, 1974: The Butts Band Appears on The Midnight Special

The Butts Band in Promo Shot

Just as The Doors were the outgrowth of Rick and the Ravens, The Butts Band was an outgrowth of The Doors. After Jim Morrison’s death in Paris in 1971 the surviving members of The Doors, Ray Manzarek, John Densmore, and Robby Krieger, were in England auditioning singers for a new version of The Doors. Manzarek decided the idea was futile and returned to Los Angeles. Densmore and Krieger stayed behind and put together The Butts Band. On March 15, 1974, The Butts Band appeared on The Midnight Special and played two songs.

The Butts Band included Jess Roden on lead vocals, Phil Chen on bass, Roy Davies on keyboards and Mike Berkowitz on drums. Krieger of course played lead guitar and Densmore was on drums; Densmore and Berkowitz playing dual drums. The show was hosted by the Pointer Sisters, and other guests included the group Focus. The Butts Band played two songs from their debut album, “Love Your Brother” written by Krieger and “Kansas City” written by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, who had written songs for Elvis Presley. You can watch the Midnight Special appearance of The Butts Band in the video above this article.

On another March 15, 1968, The Doors also played Colgate University in upstate New York. The Stone Poneys with lead singer Linda Ronstadt opened for The Doors. Despite Jim Morrison having mic trouble that night the show was described as dramatic and Robby Krieger’s guitar playing stunning. There is a short clip from an audience member’s film on Youtube:

Originally published March 15, 2016.

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