July 2011: Manzarek and Krieger Play in Israel


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Ray Manzarek and Robby Krieger, Israel, 2011

In late 2010, former Doors members Ray Manzarek and Robby Krieger, then performing together as the Manzarek-Krieger Band, announced that they would play a show in Tel Aviv, Israel, on July 5th, 2011. In March of that year, the Palestinian group The Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) compared the Israeli occupation of Gaza to Apartheid and asked that Manzarek-Krieger cancel their Tel Aviv show (read the full letter).

To the best of my knowledge Manzarek-Krieger never formally replied to the Palestinian statement. At a show in Sellersville, Pennsylvania on May 21st, 2011, Manzarek commented that “Christians and Muslims and Jews should put away their religious books and just love each other and, by the way, he and Robby Krieger were looking forward to playing as The Doors in Tel Aviv because ‘the Israelis are so cool,'” according to an article in CounterPunch magazine by Randy Shields. In his article, Shields goes on to challenge Manzarek-Krieger to be on the next Free Gaza Flotilla and to play in Gaza.

So, what do Doors fans think Ray and Robby should have done? Should they have canceled the Tel-Aviv show? Should they have performed in Gaza? Was Ray right that we should just love each other and take politics and religion out of the show? I’d be interested to hear what Doors fans have to say about this, so please feel free to comment.

Originally published May 31, 2011.

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  1. It’s a great story! Never knew Ray and Robbie performed in Tel Aviv.

    I think Ray and Robbie did the right thing by refusing to get mixed up in the politics of it all, they could not help but angering many and changing the minds of none. That author’s article you linked the story too, that guy has a few screws loose. He needs to learn to articulate not entertain us.

    I love Ray saying “Israelis are cool.” Because for one, he’s right. And for two, no one in entertainment has the courage to say something uplifting about Israel. They’re all timid sheep and do not dare cross “the party line.”

  2. I don’t know what you mean by “no one in entertainment has the courage to say something uplifting about Israel.” Israel isn’t a perfect state and has some policies that are questionable but I think most people in the U.S. have a positive view towards Israel.

  3. Well since you asked: I would say 95% of Hollywood and music industry, and 90% of the elite college professors who have an opinion, and the entire U.N., think Israel is some terrible nation that moved in on the Palestinians and occupied their country and are oppressing them since. I would argue none of that is further from the truth, and I am not Jewish, I am Italian ancestry and Catholic. But to speak out in those circles against prevailing sentiments is roundly criticized. Israel may have some “questionable” policies that could be argued, but I would need to know what those are. I do know the Jews have been the victims of pogroms and violent attacks on their own people in that land since the 1920’s and it has never stopped. How can anyone blame Israel for wanting to defend its own citizens? If the Arabs truly wanted peace they could have had it 20 times over. Seems to me they want to rid the region of all Jews and the wealthy Arab states are using the Palestinians as impoverished pawns to make Israel look bad instead of supporting them financially or allowing some of them to emigrate to their own countries. They will not.

    Be that as it may, Jim, I do appreciate this article and so many others you offer up.

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