The End

It’s bad enough that "Rolling Stone" has morphed into "Esquire" for a slightly younger generation, with a perfect binding that makes it impossible to fully grasp Angus Young’s mug, he looks like some origami trick from the back cover of "MAD", but what had me blowing chunks was the ad four pages into the magazine…  "THE DOORS INSPIRED CHUCK TAYLOR".

Are you fucking kidding me?  I thought that John Densmore had a lock on this kind of shit.  Or maybe that was just the band’s music.  Their image…

I love the Doors.  Their first album was transcendent.  But I’ve never ever owned a pair of Chuck Taylors.  I’m just not a Converse kind of guy.  To tie up the Doors with Chuck Taylor is like hooking up Metallica with Maypo.  What’s next, the Stones for Stride-Rite?

Shit, is there no commercial opportunity these bands won’t turn down?  The concept of legacy has been completely forgotten.  But, a great band’s music never will be.  Isn’t that the lesson of AC/DC, that despite refusing to whore themselves out, endorse products, feature their music in commercials, they own the second biggest selling catalog?

Respect the music.

But no one buys that anymore.  Our whole country has lost its dignity.  As Ray Davies once sang, money talks and we’re the living proof.

If you’re educated, you’re an elitist.  You should be working a blue collar job like a real American, not prepared for change that might come down the pike, and about to be fired because the man shipped your job overseas.  Forced to buy all your goods at the big box store known as Wal-Mart that raped your city’s downtown and replaced reasonable jobs with low-paying gigs akin to those in a jail.  Not as guards, but as PRISONERS!

Has the Doors music been forgotten?  What caused the last renaissance, twenty five years ago?  When suddenly everybody wanted to listen to "The End".  There was no advertising then, just WORD OF MOUTH!

God, does the Vatican have to do a deal for the Sistine Chapel?  To make sure people continue to come?  Too bad Picasso’s dead, otherwise he could be hawking scarves for Target.  Hell, couldn’t they do one of those ads where they take footage and he appears with his daughter Paloma? Just because the body’s cold doesn’t mean you can’t make some money on it.

And did Jim Morrison even OWN a pair of sneakers?  Never mind Chuck Taylors?  I remember him dressed in black.  The Ramones were big on canvas shoes, but not the rockers of the sixties.

But Chuck Taylor’s got a lot of bread.  They want to make the brand cool.  And their advertising agency likes the Doors…  I mean who’s cooler than Jim Morrison?  So you make an offer of beaucoup bucks and the only person who gets fucked in the ass is the fan.  I respect the act.  I’m not whoring myself out.  How do you expect me to buy music if I can’t respect it?

What’s next?

Come on…  Can’t John Lennon sell glasses?

Or maybe that’s Buddy Holly’s purview.

And if the Doors are in danger of being forgotten, how about Sinatra?

If the music is great, it’ll last forever.  And that’s why classic rock endures.  Because of its greatness.

The Doors might not sell quite the tonnage of AC/DC, but that’s because their music is cerebral.  It’s for people who want to delve a bit deeper, who want to think.  It’s a rite of passage for those who read Vonnegut and Hesse in high school as opposed to dropping out and working at the 7-11. You’re not even aware of the Oedipus complex unless you finish high school…  How are you supposed to comprehend "The End"?

But now that you’ve seen the band has aligned with Chuck Taylor, you’re gonna check ’em out.  You’re gonna buy all those albums because the band inspired sneakers, if you can stomach that bullshit.

Don’t tell me that things have changed.  These are my memories, this is my life.  You can make a ton of dough and lose it all in the market, seemingly overnight.  But it takes a lifetime to build memories.  Respect them.  They pay dividends.  Not only monetary, but emotional.  And that’s what we are, not the sum of our toys, but our experiences, our moods, our memories, our histories.  Great music is not only part of our identity, it IMPACTS our identity.  We respect artists who are grasping for greatness, who want to get it right, who want to say something as opposed to cashing the check.

Jim Morrison might be six feet under, but he’s alive and well in my mind.  Long live the Lizard King!

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