Celebration of the Lizard

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"Celebration of the Lizard"
Musical and poetry piece by The Doors
from the album Absolutely Live
Published1970
Released1970, (live version)
RecordedAquarius Theater, Los Angeles - July 21, 1969
GenrePsychedelic rock, acid rock, space rock, progressive rock, poetry
Length14:25 (live version)
17:09 (studio version)
LabelElektra
Composer(s)John Densmore, Robbie Kreiger, Ray Manzarek, Jim Morrison
Lyricist(s)Jim Morrison
Producer(s)Paul A. Rothchild

"Celebration of the Lizard" is a performance piece with lyrics written by Jim Morrison, lead singer of the Doors with music by the Doors. Composed as a series of poems, they include musical sections, spoken verse and passages of allegorical storytelling.[1]

Celebration of the Lizard was performed in its entirety at a handful of Doors' shows. A complete live performance appeared on the band's 1970 live album Absolutely Live. The first complete studio-recorded version appeared on the compilation album Legacy: The Absolute Best in 2003.

Poems[edit]

  • Lions in the Street
  • Wake Up!
  • A Little Game
  • The Hill Dwellers
  • Not to Touch the Earth
  • Names of the Kingdom
  • The Palace of Exile

Description[edit]

The entire piece was intended to be recorded and released as one full side of one of the band's albums. However, record producer Paul A. Rothchild and the other members of the band thought that the extended poetic sections and overall length of the piece made a complete recording impossible.[2] The band did attempt to record the full piece several times but abandoned the idea as they were dissatisfied with the results. One musical passage, "Not to Touch the Earth," was released on their third studio album Waiting for the Sun in 1968. The lyrics for the rest of the piece were published inside the gatefold jacket of the original Waiting for the Sun vinyl LP, with a note "Lyrics to a theatre composition by The Doors."[3]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Goldstein, Richard (5 August 1968). "The Shaman as Superstar". New York Magazine. New York.
  2. ^ When You're Strange film (2009)
  3. ^ Waiting for the Sun (3 July 1968), liner notes

External links[edit]