The Doors – People Are Strange


Attack of the Killer Track! is a series that explores tracks from artists from a variety of genres. Some of the tracks were singles, some of them were obscure b-sides or long forgotten album tracks. One thing is certain – all of them are killer tracks.

The Doors can be a controversial topic among hip music lovers. Was Jim Morrison a drunken buffoon as some claimed?  (I’m thinking of Lester Bangs as played by Philip Seymour Hoffman, may he RIP) Or was he a beat poet visionary? I’ve always leaned towards the latter, even if some of the drunken ramblings bring a smile to my face with their incomprehensible meanings.  Unfortunately, the music can sometimes get overlooked; such is the shadow that Jim Morrison casts. This is another band whose catalog is almost beyond criticism for me – the 6 albums recorded with Morrison on vocals are strange, passionate, and timeless. “People Are Strange” was released as a single in September of 1967, hitting #12 on the US Hot 100 charts. The music is a nod towards European cabaret, lending the tune an otherworldly vibe. At just over 2 minutes, the band (that’s Ray Manzarek on keyboards, John Densmore on drums, and Robby Krieger on guitar) locks into a groove that is essential for the song to make its impact felt. Jim Morrison seems to be relaying the feeling of what it is like not to fit in, to exist neither here nor there. One of my favorite songs by The Doors, everything connects perfectly. Some of my favorite lines…“When you’re strange / Faces come out of the rain / When you’re strange / No one remembers your name / When you’re strange”….”People are strange / When you’re a stranger / Faces look ugly when you’re alone”

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