Friday, January 07, 2005

MANAGEROBIT: The death has been announced of Danny Sugerman, the manager of The Doors. In a rather alarming piece of imagery, Ray Manzarek reacted to the news by observing "Danny is standing side-by-side with his great friend, Jim Morrison, and the two of them will now be laughing together into eternity." John Densmore, meanwhile, paid tribute to "the No. 1 Doors fan of the world."

Sugerman was 14 when he first hooked up with the band, working as a general lackey for free until Morrison suggested he be put on the payroll. After Jim took his final bath, Sugerman stepped up to manage the affairs of the remaining members, and set about creating a myth that the band were more than a bunch of plodders led by a tubby guy sweating in cheap leather pants. First he did this with the book No-one Here Gets Out Alive - in which he claimed that his personal belief was that Jim was "god" - and then by helping along the hagiographic flick The Doors, which at 141 minutes was, at least, mercifully shorter than all the pointless noodling in the middle of Light My Fire.

More recently, Sugerman had found himself on the board of the US Drug Policy foundation and tried his hand at other books. Having had success with two books about Jim Morrison, Sugerman then told the same story all over again, this time with himself at the middle of it. He then wrote a couple of other Doors-related books, before finally branching out and turning in a biography of Guns N Roses - concluding that Axl Rose is an heir to Byron and Rimbaud (it's a little known fact that Byron once replaced Shelley with a guy wearing a fast food bag on his head) before trying to explain away Axl's homophobic and racist side.

Sugerman once turned up on Granada late one Sunday evening reading from one of his books - probably one of the Doors ones - in a very dull monotone for what seemed like six or seven hours. Perhaps one of the soothing balms of the new ITV is that the programme is hugely unlikely to be dug out and replayed as a tribute.

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