In the wake of Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek‘s death Monday at age 74 after a battle with bile-duct cancer, the group’s two surviving members, guitarist Robby Krieger and drummer John Densmore, have penned tributes to their longtime band mate.
After issuing a brief initial statement about Manzarek’s passing on Monday, Krieger later posted a longer homage on his official Facebook page. In the message, Krieger notes that Manzarek and late Doors singer Jim Morrison “were the two most unusual people I have ever known.” He then points out that while Morrison “was obviously a genius” whose unique qualities were immediately apparent, Ray “was a late bloomer.”
Krieger continues, “The real Ray didn’t appear until after Jim was gone. He was constantly doing projects with different people, producing, playing with different poets. He always saw the good side of people, and that was his genius.”
The guitarist goes on to praise Manzarek for being “the only guy at UCLA that saw something good about Jim. Everyone else thought of Jim as a phony or worse. He saw the genius of Jim’s words and the rest is history.”
Lastly, Krieger notes that Ray “sure did influence my life, and I hope yours [too]. I’ll always be grateful to John for introducing me to Ray and Jim, and I’ll never forget them.”
As for Densmore, he writes of Manzarek in an extended Twitter post, “There was no keyboard player on the planet more appropriate to support Jim Morrison’s words.” Then, speaking directly to his late band mate, he declares, “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.”
Meanwhile, a TMZ report has revealed some new details about Manzarek’s illness and the treatment he sought to cure it. Sources close to the keyboardist’s side group The Manzarek-Rogers Band revealed to TMZ that Ray was at the RoMed Clinic in Rosenheim, Germany, the facility in which he died, because it’s a world-class clinic that specializes in treating the rare cancer that killed him. The sources reported that Manzarek told his band mates about his condition in March, and he went to Germany not long after that.
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