Last known unreleased song from the band’s vault is available digitally
The Doors fabled studio outtake “Paris Blues,” the last known unreleased song from the band’s vault, is available digitally along with a new video. The video premiered exclusively on AXS TV and will now debut on the band’s YouTube page today (Fri, Nov 18th) at 6 pm ET.
“Paris Blues” also serves as the title track to a new blues-themed compilation of the same name coming out on vinyl for Record Store Day’s Black Friday event on November 25th. The album will be available as a limited edition of 10,000 numbered copies on translucent blue vinyl at select independent music stores. The LP’s cover art is an original painting by guitarist Robby Krieger, and the set also includes liner notes by blues scholar Mary Katherine Aldin.
“Paris Blues” traveled a long and winding path to its release, taking on a mythic quality among Doors fans along the way. An original blues song written by the band, the track was recorded during one of the band’s recording sessions for either The Soft Parade or LA Woman (no one seems to remember). The master tape of the song was lost, and the only surviving copy was given to Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek. Sadly, this copy was partially damaged by his son Pablo — a toddler at the time — who recorded over a few short parts. Now, through some creative editing, the song has been rescued from obscurity for the new album.
The band’s deep love for the blues shines throughout Paris Blues. Other highlights include two previously unreleased live recordings of singer Jim Morrison and Krieger performing as a duo at a benefit for Norman Mailer’s mayoral campaign on May 31, 1969, in West Hollywood. The first song is “I Will Never Be Untrue,” a band original written for, but left off of, 1970’s Morrison Hotel. The other is a cover of Robert Johnson’s “Me And The Devil Blues.” Both songs were recorded by Frank Lisciandro, a filmmaker who befriended Manzarek and Morrison when all three attended the film program at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).
Paris Blues also contains a pair of outtakes recorded during the band’s sessions for 1969’s The Soft Parade – “(You Need Meat) Don’t Go No Further” and “I’m Your Doctor.” Both feature Manzarek on vocals backed by Krieger and drummer John Densmore. In 2019, bass by Robert DeLeo of Stone Temple Pilots was added to the songs, which were included on Rhino’s 50th anniversary anniversary edition of the album.
The flipside of Paris Blues collects three songs from Live in Vancouver 1970, a concert album released in 2010 by The Doors Bright Midnight Archive label. Recorded during the band’s 1970 tour, these live tracks spotlight legendary bluesman Albert King, who joined the band onstage during its June 6, 1970, show at the Pacific Coliseum in Vancouver. Morrison’s introduction of King is included along with live versions of “Little Red Rooster,” “Rock Me Baby,” and “Who Do You Love?”