Photo: Jill Jarrett
Robby Krieger's Memoir 'Set The Night On Fire' Offers A New Perspective On The Doors & Jim Morrison: "There Was Another Side To Him"
The dust is finally settling on the Doors' legacy: These days, guitarist Robby Krieger and drummer John Densmore are getting along great. And the pandemic allowed Krieger the time to finally complete his memoir, 'Set the Night on Fire.'
When Robby Krieger first watched The Doors, something nagged at him in a big way. It wasn't just that the film almost unwaveringly focused on Jim Morrison — or concocted outrageous scenes from whole cloth, like the singer throwing his girlfriend in a closet and setting it ablaze. No, it was that Oliver Stone's 1991 rock flick failed to reflect the Doors' synergy — four to one, one to four.
"It just doesn't capture the interaction between the four of us," the GRAMMY nominee tells GRAMMY.com over the phone. What about unforgettable wildman Morrison? "There was another side to him that people don't know that much about. Only people that knew him," he adds. "I tried to put that over in the book and tell people what it was really like to hang out with him — when he wasn't all f*ed up."
Read More: The Doors' Self-Titled Debut: For The Record
Krieger is talking about his new, Jeff Alulis-assisted memoir, Set the Night on Fire: Living, Dying and Playing Guitar with the Doors, which arrived Oct. 12. For Doors fans, Krieger's tell-all has been decades coming; after all, drummer John Densmore dropped his book, Riders on the Storm, in 1990, and keyboardist Ray Manzarek followed with Light My Fire in 1999.
What took so long? Despite those three musicians experiencing the band together, shoulder-to-shoulder, they took away sometimes wildly different ideas of what happened. Their differences were magnified in the 2000s, when quarrelling gave way to out-and-out litigation. At times, it seemed nobody could agree on who the Doors were, and what they represented.
But now the smoke has cleared, and surviving members Krieger and Densmore — Manzarek passed away of cancer in 2013 — are getting along famously. For the guitarist's part, he's busier than ever. Aside from promoting Set the Night on Fire, Krieger's getting ready to roll out two new albums and a 50th-anniversary boxed set of L.A. Woman, plus a virtual book event via the Library of Philadelphia on Nov. 8.
Thanks in part to a global pandemic, which gave him the time and space to pick up the threads of a 25-year-old project, Krieger has found an opening to tell his side of the story. GRAMMY.com gave him a ring to discuss his nonlinear storytelling approach, his post-Doors life and career and what the public still gets wrong about Morrison — and their band.
I'm sure you've had opportunities to tell your story in the past. What compelled you to do it now?
Actually, I started writing this about 25 years ago, back when Ray and John both came out with their memoirs. It seemed like it just caused a lot of problems. One of them didn't like what the other said, and same with the other guy. So, it kind of put a stink on me wanting to do it, but I had a lot of it done back then.
I was just waiting until things died down. I had that trial and all that crap. I just kind of forgot about it until the pandemic hit, and then I had all this time. I said, "Hey, might as well finish that book."
It's wild how three guys who had these experiences together could have this kaleidoscope of perspectives on what happened.
Well, that happens with bands, you know? I was just reading about Creedence and all the problems those guys had. They were the biggest thing happening, and then one guy was unhappy about the songwriting or whatever. One thing leads to another.
I'll always remember when I first went to the Hall of Fame induction, when we got inducted back in '90, '91. They were being inducted as well, and I was sitting with the brother [Tom Fogerty]. He went, "He won't play with us. Even for something like this, he will not." I said, "Man, that trouble runs deep."
The Doors. Photo: Bobby Klein
I've always enjoyed the Doors because of all four of you — your contributions and musical voices. Has it been frustrating to watch it become the Jim Show?
Yeah, yeah. I don't think as much as it used to be. When the [Oliver Stone] movie came out, it was all about Jim. But I think, as time goes on, it'll be appreciated more as a band.
Jim was always against that. They wanted to call it "Jim Morrison and the Doors," and he would never put up with that. We had managers who wanted to do that — or even get rid of us and make him a frontman for some superstars or something like that. He would have never put up with that.
You guys had problems like any other band has, but Jim believed in the band democracy.
That's why he would say "Everything written by the Doors." Even though he was writing most of the songs in the early days, he didn't want it to be "Written by Jim Morrison," even though he wrote those first 10 songs or so. They were totally his.
So much ink is devoted to Morrison that it's easy to forget how tight-knit you guys were.
Oh yeah, for sure. I think the three of us — John, Ray and I — were an amazingly tight unit. Ray really was the bassist of the whole thing, because he played the piano bass with his left hand and organ with the right hand. He was so solid — his timing and everything — so that let John and I float over the top of it.
It just worked out perfectly. We were at the right place at the right time and got along musically so well. I've been in so many different musical situations since then and it's never been quite the same as how it was with the Doors.
The Doors. Photo: Paul Ferrara
I enjoyed the conversational, discursive style of Set the Night on Fire. Was that a conscious decision — to not make it a linear experience?
Yeah. I think a lot of that was due to my co-writer, Jeff Alulis. We would just have conversations and talk about what happened. I had the outline of the book — like I said — for years. So, we would just fill in the blanks, you know?
Did the anecdotes spring forth in the order as seen in the book?
Not really. We kind of went through it chronologically and then, after looking at it, we said, "Hmmm. That's boring." "And then this happened, and then it's '72, '73…" I like movies that jump back and forth and do flashbacks. So, that was kind of the idea of what we wanted to do with the book.
When trying to recall what happened half a century ago, did you have to deal with the fallibility of memory?
[Chuckles] Well, yeah. That was where Jeff came in. He's a really good researcher. So, he got to know all these — we call them the "Doors nerds." And these guys know everything about the Doors! Every gig and every little thing that happened. That made it a lot easier to remember stuff.
It was great to read about how you developed your flamenco-influenced guitar style.
Well, that was the first kind of guitar I played back then. I took flamenco lessons. My dad had these flamenco records, and I wanted to sound like that. Actually, the only real flamenco-y kind of song was "Spanish Caravan." I got in there.
But it was mostly the use of the fingers on the right hand that you use in flamenco. I kept that in my guitar playing on electric. I never used a pick with the Doors, and it made us sound different than most.
The Doors. Photo: Henry Diltz
I feel like you guys harkened back to a time when rock bands operated more like jazz bands — cooperating and giving each other a lot of space.
Yeah. Nowadays, it's usually one guy as kind of the musical leader. You don't get that unified band sound. You listen to a Stones song and you know it's the Rolling Stones, even when Mick isn't playing or singing.
After Jim passed away, you guys still had those core musical components. What was the feeling like in the band once he was gone?
We certainly didn't think of quitting. We knew it wouldn't be easy without Jim. But when Jim had gone to Paris, we had continued getting together and making new songs, thinking he would be back at some point and we'd make another album.
So, we had a bunch of songs, and the guy at Elektra Records — Jac Holzman, who we were good buddies with at that time — he kind of talked us into it: "Just keep doing it, man. You guys are so good together. There's no reason to stop." That was kind of cool, so he signed us up for three albums.
What do you make of the arc of your post-Doors career? I'm sure there are some hidden corners that even Doors fans would be surprised to learn about.
Yeah, I've had a lot of solo albums. It's been mostly instrumental stuff because, for me, writing lyrics is like pulling teeth. [Chuckles.] I mostly had Jim to do that until he was gone. But I love music and will always continue to record.
I've got two albums in the can right now that are getting ready to come out. I've got a reggae album — an instrumental reggae album of songs that most people know, like "Stayin' Alive" and Beatles songs. Stuff like that where you know the melody, but to hear it with a reggae style is kind of cool.
What are some reggae records you've been checking out?
You know, I've always been the biggest Wailers fan. Steel Pulse, stuff like that. There's a lot of good reggae that's been coming out over the past years, but I haven't really kept up with it as much as I should have, I guess.
I do. [Editor's note: The Butts Band was a group helmed by Densmore and Krieger between 1973 and 1975.]
Yeah, that was after we split up. John and I were over in England and we got a hold of this guy, Phil Chen. He was the oddest reggae guy in town. And funk — he could play funk. He liked James Jamerson, Motown stuff, which he liked.
So, that was the direction we wanted to go in — Motown reggae. [Chuckles.] It was really happening over in England. It wasn't so much here.
But we ended up recording half the album we did in Jamaica. Phil was from Jamaica, so he was so happy because he got to see his dad, who was sick and passed away shortly after. He showed us all over Jamaica. We actually stayed at [Island Records founder] Chris Blackwell's house up in the mountains.
As far as tending the legacy of the band, how would you describe the dynamic between you three — now two — guys?
We've actually been getting along really good lately. Ever since Ray passed, the two of us decided, "Hey, there's no use in being mad at each other."
So, we've done some fun stuff lately. We did a charity thing for homeless people about a year ago. And then, just recently, John came down to my studio and we did a version of "L.A. Woman," which is coming — the L.A. Woman boxed set is coming out. We did a promotional thing for that.
I play that one so much when I play the Doors stuff. "L.A. Woman" is always in the set. In fact, the last gig we did, my son and I — and a couple of the guys who played with Ray Manzarek and I — we did the whole L.A. Woman album because it's the 50th anniversary of that album.
Do any particular memories of those sessions come to mind?
Oh, gosh. That album was probably one of the most fun times ever for us. Up until then, Paul Rothchild had been producing everything — all the albums. Over time, he got a little anal, maybe. When you have unlimited funds in a studio, you tend to go crazy. He would take four hours to get a snare drum sound and stuff like that.
So, it almost got to be like work before we had fun. Especially for Jim, because the vocal was always the last thing to go on. When you're doing overdubs and stuff, the vocal is last, so he'd have to hang around all day and get drunk. By the time it was ready for him to sing, he'd be so messed up that we'd have to wait until the next day, usually.
But on L.A. Woman, we produced it ourselves with Bruce Botnick, who was our engineer all the time. We did it at our little rehearsal studio, which was pretty convenient for Jim, because he was staying at this little motel across the street. Jim was so amazing: He never cared about money. Staying in a crappy motel for $10 a night. But it was right across the street, so he was there every day, bright and early.
We just had so much time making that album: It was really live, because we had Jerry Scheff, who was Elvis' bass player. And then, we had a rhythm guitar player, which we'd never done before. That let me concentrate on whatever I was playing. I wouldn't have to overdub anything; I could just do it live.
I think had Jim come back from Paris, that's how we would have continued recording.
It's been framed historically as the back-to-basics album — a little earthier. Did it feel that way at the time?
Oh, yeah, for sure. But the cool part is that we actually wrote a couple of songs together, which had never happened before. It was always me and Jim, or I would write one, or he would write one. And then, we'd get together with the other guys and work it out.
But this time, it was like "OK, let's start playing. Let's just jam." That's how "L.A. Woman" came out. Jim just came up with those words, man, right on the spot. It was crazy.
"Riders" was a similar thing. We were kind of jamming on that song "(Ghost) Riders in the Sky" and that gave Jim the idea: "Instead of '(Ghost) Riders in the Sky,' how about "Riders on the Storm"? He just made those words up.
And then he came up with the "Mr. Mojo Risin'" thing for "L.A. Woman." He had that idea before, because he tried to stick that in one of the other songs. [Laughs.]
In the movie, that girlfriend of his claims that she came up with the "Mojo Risin'" thing with the witch. Remember, he got married to that witch, supposedly? But I think Jim actually came up with that idea. It's an anagram, you know. Jim Morrison and "Mr. Mojo Risin'."
Jim has been rendered messianic with time, which makes a certain amount of sense — he was quite a figure. But I hope this interview can help unfreeze his persona a tiny bit.
Well, that's what the book does, too. Not to say that he wasn't an amazing frontman and all that, but there was another side to him that people don't know that much about. Only people that knew him. I tried to put that over in the book and tell people what it was really like to hang out with him — when he wasn't all f*ed up.
What did you appreciate the most about his musicianship?
For a guy that never took a vocal lesson — never took a music lesson in his life — he was really an amazing singer. All these great musicians who play Doors songs with me, they all say the same thing about Jim's voice. He never hit a wrong note, you know?
And he had the most amazing range. He could have that looow voice and then he could scream cooler than anybody could ever scream. He just had a natural talent, and I think people will start realizing that as time goes on. But, god, what a voice.
It must feel like the soundtrack to your life, in a way.
Yeah, for sure. For sure. There's so many guys, like I said, that I play the Doors' songs with today. None of them can quite capture [the songs] the way Jim did it. But they try!
When you consider the breadth of the Doors' legacy and who Jim was, what misconception nags at you the most? What about the band's public perception would you change, if you could?
Well, after seeing the movie, it just doesn't capture the interaction between the four of us. It does a good job of showing how crazy Jim was — lighting his girlfriend on fire in the closet, which never happened.
I don't want to knock the movie, because it was a great rock 'n' roll movie. But it could have been about any group — not just the Doors.
And I think Val Kilmer was amazing, man. You know, the way he got the job, he actually had a Doors tribute band. He made a little film on video and showed it to Oliver Stone and I, and that's how he got the gig. He actually sang 90 percent of that stuff in the movie himself.
Robby Krieger and Ray Manzarek. Photo: Paul Ferrara
Eight years after his passing, what do you miss most about Ray Manzarek?
The way he played. I've played with so many keyboard guys who try to play Ray's stuff, and none of them quite get it. Every one of them is amazed at the stuff he came up with — it was just unbelievable.
Read More: The Doors' Ray Manzarek Dies
He was such a different kind of guy — like Jim, kind of, in a way. I think maybe Ray's the only guy in the world that could have actually corralled Jim enough to form a rock 'n' roll band, because he was a little older than us. He was 27 when Jim was 22. I was 19. John was 21, I think.
Ray had a certain presence. He was a big guy — six foot two. [Imitates Manzarek] A big, low voice, you know. I think he's just what Jim needed to corral him enough to be serious about making a rock 'n' roll band.
Photo: Rebecca Sapp/WireImage.com
Robby Krieger Lets It Slide
Doors guitarist visits the GRAMMY Museum to discuss his GRAMMY-nominated album
On Jan. 14 the GRAMMY Museum hosted the Doors' Robby Krieger as part of its An Evening With series to discuss his first solo album in 10 years, Singularity.
Before an intimate audience of 200, Krieger discussed meeting the Doors' Ray Manzarek and Jim Morrison for the first time, playing in his first band and creating Singularity with co-producer Arthur Barrow. Krieger also performed a brief set, including "Let It Slide."
"We formed a group called the Psychedelic Rangers," said Krieger on his first experience playing in a band. "It wasn't a real group because we never played anywhere, but we'd get together and jam."
Born in Los Angeles, Krieger met drummer John Densmore, Manzarek and Morrison while studying physics and Indian music at UCLA. The quartet formed the Doors, signing with Elektra Records and releasing their self-titled debut in 1967. The album peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and spawned the No. 1 hit "Light My Fire." The group continued to achieve several Top 10 albums, including Strange Days (1967), Waiting For The Sun (1968), The Soft Parade (1969), Morrison Hotel (1970), and L.A. Woman (1971). The latter album proved to be the Doors' final release before Morrison's death in 1971.
Krieger released his debut solo album, Robby Kreiger & Friends, in 1977. He earned his first GRAMMY nomination at the 53rd Annual GRAMMY Awards for Best Pop Instrumental Album for Singularity, a 10-track instrumental jazz-fusion album. Krieger has received GRAMMY Hall Of Fame inductions with the Doors for the band's self-titled debut album, "Riders On The Storm" and "Light My Fire," a song that has also been recorded by the likes of Shirley Bassey, José Feliciano and Stevie Wonder.
Upcoming GRAMMY Museum events include Musical Explorations: G. Love (April 9), An Evening With Henry Butler (April 11) and An Introduction To Hip-Hop (April 12).
Click on the "GRAMMY Museum events" tag below for links to other GRAMMY News stories in this series.
MusiCares Announces 20th Anniversary Campaign
Campaign launched with $5 million matching challenge gift from the ELMA Music Foundation and a significant gift in memory of George Harrison
MusiCares has announced its 20th Anniversary Campaign fundraising effort with a $5 million matching gift from the ELMA Music Foundation and a significant gift from Olivia Harrison and the Material World Foundation in memory of George Harrison. The overall fundraising goal of the campaign is $15 million.
MusiCares ensures that music people have a place to turn in times of financial, medical and personal need by providing programs and services, including emergency financial assistance, educational workshops, flu shots, hearing tests, and medical/dental screenings. Additionally, the MusiCares MAP Fund allows ongoing access to addiction recovery treatment and sober living resources for members of the music community regardless of their financial circumstances, including Safe Harbor Rooms, weekly addiction support groups and the MusiCares Sober Touring Network. In its first 20 years, MusiCares has served 65,000 clients, awarded 18,000 grants and provided $24 million in funding to members of the music community.
"The MusiCares 20th Anniversary Campaign is an opportunity to create a legacy for our future and long-term resources for the music people we serve," said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of The Recording Academy and MusiCares. "We thank all of our leadership donors for their generosity, and we want to highlight the ELMA Music Foundation and Olivia Harrison and the Material World Foundation for their extraordinary gifts that represent both sides of the music world — the industry professional and the artist."
"It is a privilege to honor George with a gift to MusiCares' 20th Anniversary Campaign," said Harrison. "Music was his life as it is for all fellow musicians. They and their families deserve the support of those in a position to assist during difficult times. MusiCares has brought together a great community of friends bonded by music and compassion. George would appreciate having this gift made in his name."
The campaign cabinet, co-chaired by noted entertainment attorney and MusiCares' Board Chair Emeritus John Branca and legendary record company executive Mo Ostin, has raised more than $11.1 million to date from numerous donors, including the Academy of Country Music, Herb Alpert Foundation, Lynn and Les Bider Family Foundation, Chris Blackwell, Pat Boone, the John Branca family, Cirque du Soleil, John Densmore, ELMA Music Foundation, David Foster Foundation, Barry Gibb, Gibson Foundation, Joel Katz, Tim Leiweke, Jim Long, the Material World Foundation, Jerry Moss, MTV Networks, Chuck Ortner, Ostin Family Foundation, Neil Portnow, Rhino Records, Bill Silva, David Sonenberg, Streisand Foundation, Rod Temperton, and Barry Weiss.
"The music world is a remarkably diverse gathering of people — from those who stand in the spotlight to people who work behind the scenes — all of whom are equally important to the music ecosystem," said Branca. "And MusiCares has been providing help to this entire community for many years."
"The MusiCares 20th Anniversary Campaign is designed to set an example of 'giving back' from the spectrum of individuals who have benefitted from working in an industry that rewards creative excellence," added Ostin.
(For a complete list of 53rd GRAMMY Awards nominees, click here.)
It has been a massively successful year in pop with an extensive group of artists, producers and songwriters creating sounds that had music fans singing, dancing and tapping along across the globe.
Over the years, pop has become a very diverse melting pot that incorporates a myriad of different genres, styles and influences. What defines great pop, however, remains unchanged. Pop is marked by elements of classic songwriting, a catchy hook or a genuine sentiment that people everywhere can instantly relate to.
A good example of pop's diverse nature in 2010 is the Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals category. Beyoncé and Lady Gaga are recognized for their solid performance of "Telephone," as are Atlanta genre-buster B.o.B, Eminem and Paramore's Hayley Williams for "Airplanes, Part II." Also nominated are Katy Perry and Snoop Dogg ("California Gurls"), Elton John and Leon Russell ("If It Wasn't For Bad") and Herbie Hancock's phenomenal "Imagine," which includes Pink, India.Arie, Seal, Konono No. 1, Jeff Beck, and Oumou Sangare.
Arguably, females ruled the pop scene this year and the Best Female Pop Vocal Performance category is a proper reflection of that sentiment. Lady Gaga ("Bad Romance"), Katy Perry ("Teenage Dream"), Sara Bareilles ("King Of Anything"), and Norah Jones ("Chasing Pirates") are all up for the coveted GRAMMY statue. Beyoncé's life performance of "Halo" also received a nod. She won this same award last year for the studio version of "Halo."
The Best Male Pop Vocal Performance nominees span an iconic superstar and brand-new talent. A 13-time GRAMMY winner, Michael Jackson received a posthumous GRAMMY nomination for "This Is It," which was featured in his moving concert film Michael Jackson's This Is It. Also nominated are Bruno Mars ("Just The Way You Are"), who scored an impressive seven GRAMMY nods total; Canadian crooner Michael Bublé ("Haven't Met You Yet"); seven-time GRAMMY winner John Mayer ("Half Of My Heart"); and "American Idol" runner-up Adam Lambert, who received his first career nomination for "Whataya Want From Me."
The cast from Fox's hit television show "Glee" impacted the mainstream charts with a slew of covers this year. The cast's memorable remake of Journey's 1981 hit "Don't Stop Believin' (Regionals Version)" is one of the nominees in the Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or A Group With Vocals category. Also nominated are Maroon 5 ("Misery"), Paramore ("The Only Exception"), Sade ("Babyfather"), and Train, who ruled the radio airwaves with "Hey, Soul Sister (Live)."
The legendary Laurie Anderson, who first impacted the scene nearly 30 year ago with her debut album Big Science, is nominated for Best Pop Instrumental Performance for "Flow." Rounding out the group are five-time nominee Jeff Beck ("Nessun Dorma"), bassist Stanley Clarke ("No Mystery"), Gorillaz ("Orchestral Intro"), and the Brian Setzer Orchestra ("Sleepwalk").
Eight-time GRAMMY nominee Kirk Whalum picks up his fifth nomination in the Best Pop Instrumental Album category for his tribute to soul great Donny Hathaway, Everything Is Everything: The Music Of Donny Hathaway. Joining him are Gerald Albright (Pushing The Envelope), Larry Carlton and Tak Matsumoto (Take Your Pick), Kenny G (Heart And Soul), and Doors guitarist Robby Krieger (Singularity).
In the Best Pop Vocal Album category Susan Boyle (I Dreamed A Dream), Lady Gaga (The Fame Monster), John Mayer (Battle Studies), Katy Perry (Teenage Dream), and fresh-faced Canadian newcomer Justin Bieber (My World 2.0) will battle it out.
Tune in to the 53rd Annual GRAMMY Awards live from Staples Center in Los Angeles on Sunday, Feb. 13, 2011, at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CBS. For updates and breaking news, please visit The Recording Academy's social networks on Twitter and Facebook.
Photo: Kevin Mazur/WireImage.com
The Week In Music: Mariah Carey, Nick Cannon Steal Christmas
The couple's tale of Santa
Nick Cannon, Grinch? It seems Cannon, possibly setting real-world expectations for his and Mariah Carey's unborn child, has been whispering not-so-sweet nothings to Carey's pregnant belly, including that there is no Santa Claus, according to an Us Weekly report. This must be especially disconcerting for Carey, who is quickly becoming the modern-day queen of Christmas music with the recent release of her second holiday collection, Merry Christmas II You, featuring an "extra festive" version of "All I Want For Christmas (Is You)." But she can relax as it seems it's all good-natured fun: "We love the holidays," Cannon recently told Us. He had us scared for a minute that Mariah was facing a lump of coal in her stocking.
They're alive! There's been a digital resurrection of sorts for Alicia Keys, Lady Gaga, Justin Timberlake, and Usher, who last week chose to embargo every tweet, status update, etc., until $1 million in funding was raised to support Key's Keep A Child Alive foundation. Thanks to donations from fans and one generous philanthropist, the goals has been met and the artists were resuscitated. What did 53rd GRAMMY Awards nominee Keys have to say to all her Twitter fans upon her revival? aliciakeys: Weeee diddddddd itttttt!!!!! thank you sooooooo much for your support and for CARING about whats going on in the world!!!!
Here's a new category for the awards shows: PopSugar's Most Memorable Shirtless Guys Of The Year. Sadly, it was apparently a bad year for shirtless musicians. Only John Legend, John Mayer and one-time musician-turned-actor Mark Wahlberg rank on the list, which is rounded out by such hard bodies as actors Zac Efron, Hugh Jackman and Ryan Phillippe. It might cause today's male pop stars to reflect longingly on Jermaine Stewart's 1988 hit, in which he sang, "We don't have to take our clothes off/To have a good time."
In related body-image news, Fitness magazine has selected the female-specific Best Celebrity Bodies of 2010. Here, the ladies of pop don't fare too much better, but singer Jennifer Hudson gets kudos in the Best Celebrity Slim Down category, Carrie Underwood gets Best Bridal Body, and Lady Gaga earns Best Moves. There was no recognition for the Black Eyed Peas' Fergie as it seems there was no Best Lovely Lady Lumps category this year.
Though Billy Joel might have told her "Don't go changing…," we may soon not recognize the Katy Perry we know and love, at least by name. During an appearance on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," Perry acknowledged she was in the process of changing her name to match her status as Mrs. Russell Brand. It won't be the first name change for the soon-to-be (we're guessing) Katy Perry-Brand. She began her career as a Christian artist under the name Katy Hudson. Still, we know it's not our teenage dream to be spending time re-alphabetizing our iTunes collections.
Forty years after his indecent exposure conviction, it is truly the end for the late Doors frontman Jim Morrison, who was posthumously pardoned by the Florida Clemency Board on Thursday. The singer was first accused following a Miami show on March 1, 1969; though members of the Doors have contended Morrison was only teasing the crowd, and didn't really do the deed. "There were 100 photos offered in evidence at the trial," said keyboardist Ray Manzarek. "Photos of everything…not one of Jim's magnificent member." On what Morrison (or his magnificent member) would think of the pardon if he were alive and with us today, guitarist Robby Krieger said, "He wouldn't give a [expletive] about a pardon. He would think it was old news." While the incident caused the band some strife in the late-60s and early-70s, it didn't stop them from garnering several No. 1 hits and three inducted recordings into the GRAMMY Hall Of Fame.
What do you get the person who has everything for the holidays this year? If you judge by celeb couple Beyoncé and Jay-Z, it's the $2 million Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport that Sasha Fierce is buying for her hubby. The Veyron Grand Sport is powered by a 16.4-liter engine that produces 1,000 horsepower with a top speed of 253 mph and a 0-60 mph time of just 2.7 seconds. According to Bugatti, the Veyron is a street car equivalent of a Formula 1 race car. Look what Jay-Z gets for putting a ring on it.
Speaking of celebrity purchases, the iconic sparkling silver glove that was once worn by the late Michael Jackson during his Bad tour has sold for a steep $330,000 at a celebrity memorabilia auction. A fedora Jackson wore onstage was also sold for $72,000 and a Jackson-signed jacket was purchased for $96,000, completing the perfect outfit for any P.Y.T.
With just three weeks of holiday shopping left, we have yet another Bieber-related holiday gift idea — the Justin Bieber trading card and sticker set. Expected to hit Target, Toys "R" Us and Walmart stores this week, the collection will include 150 cards and 30 stickers featuring the teen pop sensation. As an added bonus, the package includes four nine-card puzzles that let fans create their very own Bieber posters. Between Bieber dolls, Bieber nail polish and his recently released memoir, First Step 2 Forever: My Story, how could anyone get lonely this holiday season?
Katy Perry's "Firework" holds the No. 1 spot on both the Billboard Hot 100 and iTunes singles chart.
Any news we've missed? Comment below.