The Doors ... What's the story behind Ed Sullivan banning them after their 1967, appearance on his TV show

11 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    At The Ed Sullivan Show The Doors were to perform People are Strange (to promote their new album, Strange Days) and their hit Light My Fire. The Ed Sullivan show was a family type show (it was aired early at night) and had a large family based audience. Ed made many groups change their lyrics. Just as The Stones had to change the words in Lets Spend the Night Together to seem more clean, The Doors were instructed to change higher to better in LMF. Ed felt that the word higher was highly inappropriate to say on their family network. Using the word higher at that time alluded to sexual/ drug references depending on how the person hearing interpreted it. Before the show Ed and some of his people came in the dressing room to tell The Doors they had to edit their lyric. Ray (the keyboardist) got angry because he called them boys, he felt that he was too condescending. Ed told the group they had to change it to better, The Doors just agreed (knowing later they would sing it their way) Before he left the dressing room he asked The Doors why they never smiled (he walked in on them while laughing at something, and they stopped when he came in) Jim replied in saying they were a sullen group, and Ed told them to smile more. The Doors went to perform People are Strange, and afterward it was time for LMF. I want to emphasize that it did not happen how it was shown in the Stone movie. Jim sang higher how he did on the album and how he normally sang it for concerts. The Doors had their tech people working the sound, so there was no blocking of the word, and was said on tv. People also say that Jim had a bit of a hard on (again not like in the movie) which pissed Ed off (I am pretty sure John, the drummer said about this in his book) After the performance a show crew came in and whined about The Doors not listening to Ed's request. Ed then came in and said that he had the Doors booked for 6 more shows but they blew it. That is when Jim said the classics line, "Hey man, we just played the Ed Sullivan show" According to Ray, after that Jim said, "You know, once a poet twice a pervert" This made Ed furious and he refused to shake their hands after the show.

    Youtube thumbnail

    on a side note: Look at Jim's sleeves in the close up, first national tv show and his cuffs are soiled :) (Sorry, for some reason that amuses me)

    and, in the full clip of this video, not the You tube one, Ed makes a hilarious face after the Doors finish.

  • 4 years ago

    The Doors Ed Sullivan

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago


    The Doors ... What's the story behind Ed Sullivan banning them after their 1967, appearance on his TV show

    Source(s): doors 39 story ed sullivan banning 1967 appearance tv show:
  • Doris
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    For the best answers, search on this site

    Watching the Ed Sullivan Show every Sunday night was one of many shows we watched as a family. I most remember the following guests/regulars. Elvis Totie Fields Topo Gigio George Carlin (As the Hippy, Dippy, Weatherman) Stiller & Meara (a really funny comedy skit) Kermit the Frog & Miss Piggy Carol Burnett Herman's Hermits

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  • The Doors were notorious for their appearance on the show. CBS network censors demanded that lead singer Jim Morrison change the lyrics to their hit single "Light My Fire" by altering the line, "Girl, we couldn't get much higher," before the band performed the song live on September 17, 1967 . The line was changed to, "Girl, we couldn't get much better". However, Morrison sang the original line, and on live television with no delay, CBS was powerless to stop it. A furious Ed Sullivan refused to shake the band members' hands, and they were never invited back to the show. According to Ray Manzarek , the band was told they would never do the Ed Sullivan show again; Morrison replied, " So what. We just did the Ed Sullivan Show "[18]—at the time, an appearance was a hallmark of success. Manzarek claims the band agreed with the producer beforehand but had no intention of altering the line.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    It had to do with the lyrics in the song "come on baby light my fire" The part where Jim morrison sing "girl we could'nt get much higher" Ed forbade Jim to sing that lyric. Jim sang it anyway. Being live TV, it got on the air. Ed was pissed.

  • ?
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    As I understand it they had an agreement on lyrics and then the doors said whatever it was they had agreed not to sing. This made Ed mad.

  • 1 decade ago

    I think it is when they sang light my fire. He wasn't supposed to say girl we couldn't get much higher and they had agreed on it. Then he went in for the closeup on the camera and said it.

    I think that is why.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I'm with jim on this one; **** ed sullivan!

    Source(s): poob
  • Iguana
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Ed had a really big shoooo.

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