A lot has been written about Jim Morrison in biographies, to memoirs, and fan tributes, but few recognize Morrison as the existential adventurer that he was. He visited the darkest continents of our souls, where few of us dare to go.
One of the things that made Jim Morrison a truly revolutionary figure was that he had a philosophy that he lived by and followed, and he had the courage of his convictions, and it cost him his life. Existentially and artistically he knew this was risky but he went ahead and followed his path to the end, a sacrifice on the altar of experience, knowingly and without regret.
Jim Morrison was a poet, but he was in a hurry. Instead of the “artist plodding away in his garden” Morrison saw an opportunity in rock ‘n’ roll and took it. The rock world offered Morrison a mass audience, and in the baby boomer generation it was a mass audience. In his lyrics he exposed teenagers to a world of thought they may not have otherwise run into. Morrison’s lyrics contain poetry, literary allusion, and anthropological insight set against the backdrop of rhythm and a backbeat.
Jim Morrison was born December 8, 1943, and had he lived he would’ve been 69 years old today. Fans will find many ways to remember Morrison on his birthday today, listening to a favorite Doors album, reading Morrison’s poetry, watching a Doors DVD, or perhaps just keeping Morrison in their thoughts and sound tributes.
Originally published December 8, 2012.