Now Available: The Doors, LONDON FOG 1966
For those who only know the basics of The Doors story, the band’s career might as well have begun with the success of their immortal single “Light My Fire.” But it didn’t. Even before they became chart-topping superstars, it’s hard to say that the foursome of Jim Morrison, Ray Manzarek, John Densmore, and Robby Krieger would ever have qualified as just another bar band, but they did do their time in the trenches, and one such trench was a Sunset Strip dive bar called the London Fog.
For years, it was believed that there were no existing recordings of The Doors during their stint at the London Fog, but it was recently discovered that A) recordings do exist, and B) Rhino has just released them in an individually-numbered, limited-edition set. Only 18,000 copies are being made available, so if you’re a Doors fan, then read on and decide if you’re ready to plunk down your hard-earned funds and add a copy to your collection.
Presented in a lift-top package designed to look like a vintage storage box, the set features seven songs on both CD and a 10-inch record that's made to resemble a test pressing. The Doors’ longtime engineer Bruce Botnick recently mastered the audio for this collection, so you know it’s going to sound as good as possible, but beyond the music, the set is also packed with liner notes from Ronnie Haran-Mellen, who saw The Doors at the London Fog and was impressed enough to book them as the house band for the Whisky a Go Go, and Nettie Peña, who captured the audio on a ¼" reel to reel recorder that her father, a teacher for the Los Angeles Unified School District, let her borrow from school and take to the show. Peña also took photos of the show, five of which are reprinted within the box set. Additionally, there’s a postcard, the set list handwritten by John Densmore, a program for the Royce Hall UCLA student film screening, plus a London Fog coaster.
Below you’ll see the full track listing for LONDON FOG 1966, but before you rush off to order your copy, keep this in mind: next year marks the 50th anniversary of The Doors’ debut album, and this is only the first of Rhino’s releases to commemorate the occasion. Stay tuned!
LONDON FOG 1966
1. Tuning I
2. "Rock Me"
3. "Baby, Please Don't Go"
4. "You Make Me Real"
5. Tuning II
6. "I'm Your Hoochie Coochie Man"
7. "Strange Days"