The Music Industry Reacts to the Death of Doors Co-Founder Ray Manzarek
By: Gary Graff

Reaction has been swift to the death of Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek on Monday (May 20) in Germany.

Following a statement from guitarist Robbie Krieger that came with the announcement, drummer John Densmore -- who's been estranged from Manzarek and Krieger since they began performing Doors music together again in 2002 -- issued his own statement, saying "There was no keyboard player on the planet more appropriate to support Jim Morrison's words. Ray, I felt totally in sync with you musically. It was like we were of one mind, holding down the foundation for Robby and Jim to float on top of.  I will miss my musical brother."

Twitter, meanwhile, quickly filled with tributes from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame -- which inducted the Doors in 1993 -- the Los Angeles club Whiskey A Go-Go and the Bonnaroo Music Festival, and from artists.

Alice Cooper tweeted that he was "absolutely stunned by the loss of my old friend" while Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry wrote that he was "very saddened by loss of Ray Manzarek. Now he's with Jim (Morrison). They mean as much to me today as they did 40 years ago."

Condolences were also tweeted by Three Dog Night, the Guess Who, Slash, the Red Hot Chili Peppers' Flea and many others.

The clubs on Hollywood's Sunset Strip, where the Doors came to prominence, dimmed their lights at 9:31 p.m. PST on Monday in tribute to Manzarek, who died at 9:31 p.m. German time in a hospital where he was being treated for bile duct cancer.

Last year, meanwhile, Manzarek told us that the (then) 45 years since the Doors formed in Los Angeles had flown by for him:

"Time flies when you're living life so, y'know, it feels...Jeez, I don't know. I don't know what it feels like, but it feels like no more than five years ago. Everything just goes whooshing by. When you're a child in grammar school, it takes forever to get out of class each day. Then once you're an adult, once you pass 40, it really starts to chug, man. What is this -- a runaway locomotive or something? Here I am, 72, holy cow! How did that happen?!"

Memorial plans are pending for Manzarek, and the family has asked for donations to be made to

CLICK HERE to learn out more about Gary Graff and his award-winning music journalism including the books he has written on Bob Seger, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen.

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