Doors Survivors Still Working on Ray Manzarek Tribute: 'We Don't Want It to Be Half-Assed'
Robby Krieger talks long-in-the-works tribute to the late keyboardist, plus his upcoming visit to Bonnaroo to play in Skrillex's Superjam set
Robby Krieger says he and John Densmore still plan to pay musical tribute to their late Doors bandmate Ray Manzarek, but logistics have proven to be challenging. Krieger and Densmore patched up legal differences and vowed to stage some sort of event in Manzarek's honor shortly after the Doors keyboardist died on May 20, 2013 in Germany from bile duct cancer.
"We have talked about it and we are truly trying to get something together to do a tribute to Ray," Krieger told Billboard during a conference call with reporters to promote his appearance at this year's Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival. "It's just very difficult to get the kind of people that we want all together at the same time. That's a big problem. A lot of people said they would love to do it; we just need to get the timing right. We don't want it to be half-assed. We want it to be really cool. But we're working on it, and it should happen. All possibilities are open."
Krieger, Densmore and Manzarek spent several years battling each other in lawsuits over the use of the Doors' name as a touring entity and the licensing of the group's music to ads. Last year Densmore published a book about the legal issues, "The Doors Unhinged."
Krieger is keeping busy even as he waits for the Manzarek tribute to come together. He tours regularly with his own bands and makes a guest appearance on the new Fuel album, "Puppet Strings." Krieger is also part of the Skrillex And Friends Superjam at Bonnaroo, joining Big Gigantic, Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart, Damian "Jr. Gong" Marley," Zedd, Janelle Monae, Warpaint and others.
"I have no idea what we're going to do or what it's going to sound like, but whatever it is, it should be fun," says Krieger, who along with Manzarek and Densmore worked with Skrillex on "Breakin' A Sweat" for the 2012 Re: GENERATION_music_project and the EDM star's "Bangarang" EP.
"I think they want to try to do a couple of Doors songs and maybe some reggae songs. I don't really know any of the people except for Mickey Hart; I'm looking forward to playing with him. But I'll try anything once."
Krieger said collaborating with Skrillex also means one thing.
"He plays really loud, so I'm bringing an extra amplifier," the guitarist said with a laugh. "I've been in... too many loud situations. You just have to be either as loud or louder than the other guys. That's the rule."