“Jim Morrison didn’t ‘do it’” was the first line of the review in the Chicago Daily News of The Doors’ June 14, 1969 show at the Chicago Auditorium. The line is a clear reference to The Doors’ Miami show on March 1 of that year in which Jim Morrison was alleged to have exposed himself. After many delays and cancellations, the Chicago Auditorium was the first live show The Doors had played in the aftermath of Miami. Was there a note of disappointment in the writer’s opening line? Or in the audience’s expectations of the show?
The Doors got a late start for this show, not even taking the stage until after midnight, but they still played for two hours. The Daily News article (“The Doors Play it Cool” by James Spurlock, published June 16th, 1969) noted how tame the show was, even up to the encore of “Light My Fire.” (For a comparison, read the article “The Doors’ First Riot at Chicago Coliseum.”) Also mentioned was how the audience was shocked by Morrison’s appearance with a full beard. After the show, Spurlock was able to interview Morrison, who went from the pithy (“We started with music, then we went into theater, but it was so shitty we went back to music”) to complaining about not being able to get a date with a “chick.”
The Auditorium Theatre is the one Chicago venue The Doors played that still exists. You can see a video tour by a fan on YouTube.
Originally published May 14, 2015.