Some stories just take you by surprise, and then they go viral and soon they’re all over the internet. Stories about Jim Morrison can be like that. Cindy Williams, who famously played Shirley Feeney on the late ’70s TV show “Laverne & Shirley,” has written a memoir called “Shirley, I Jest” which includes an anecdote of meeting Jim Morrison when she was a waitress at the Whisky a Go-Go.
Williams says that it was her first table of her first night of waitressing at the Whisky. She’d been given the VIP section. The table seated two blonde women and a man who had his back towards her. Williams took the orders of the women, each of whom ordered a Tom Collins. She asked the man for his order, and when he turned around she saw it was Jim Morrison. Morrison said he wanted a bottle of Jack Daniels. Williams went to the bartender and ordered the drinks and the bartender asked “Who is in the bar? Jim Morrison?” The bartender told her Morrison could have a single or a double but not a bottle. Williams relayed the message to Morrison, who sent her back insisting he wanted a bottle. This went on for awhile until Williams, almost in tears, was told by Morrison that it was a prank.
Williams’s book was released April 30, 2015 and is available on Amazon.
Williams’s tale isn’t new, and in fact it’s been floating around Doors message boards for years. Williams also wasn’t the only waitress in Hollywood who tangled with Jim Morrison. Sally Stevens, who would later work for Elektra Records, was working at a bar called Thee Experience when she encountered Morrison, and this episode was a little more visceral than Williams’s experience. (Thee Experience was a psychedelic rock club that lasted less than a year before folding.) Morrison wasn’t in Stevens’s section, but he must have noticed her, because he kept moving his chair into the aisle to get her to come over and take his order. Morrison’s group was being rowdy and perhaps the waitress for that section had abandoned her post.
Suddenly, Stevens was grabbed from behind by the bearded and drunk Morrison, who screamed at her, “BRING ME A BEER, BITCH!” Stevens could hold her own, and she put her foot on the chair Morrison was sitting in and pushed it over with him sitting in it. The enraged Morrison then demanded to see the manager and proceeded to get Stevens fired. Morrison later regretted what he had done, and to make amends he got her a job at Elektra Records at the switchboard, where he would call her and they would talk for long periods of time. If you would like to read Sally’s story in her own words, you can find it at her Rockphiles blog. A version also appears in the book “Laurel Canyon” by Michael Walker.
Originally published June 10, 2015.
Update, July 27, 2017: Sally has been a friend to The Doors Examiner for its entire tenure, and before that at many virtual hangouts for Doors fans. Sally has read the articles, commented on them, on occasion corrected me, and pointed me in the right direction on a few stories. Sally also has a lot of great stories to share herself. She’s been offered the chance to write a book of her experiences and needs some time to write the book, which means some funds to help in the writing of the book (interest from a publisher doesn’t automatically mean a large advance, unless you’re Stephen King or John Grisham). To this end, Sally has set up a GoFundMe account for her book, which she is calling “My Memories of the Music Business.” Help out by donating a few dollars so Sally can concentrate on writing and soon we’ll have a new book that includes stories of Jim Morrison, Jackson Browne, and Glenn Frey to mention a few. Good luck Sally!