Before their live television debut on "The Ed Sullivan Show," The Doors were a relatively popular band, but they hadn't quite become a part of the nation's fabric yet. "Light My Fire" was their breakthrough single, and even though it was initially only moderately successful on the charts, their appearance on "The Ed Sullivan Show" is what's made it an absolute smash hit and a rock and roll classic.

'Light My Fire'

"Light My Fire" was penned by guitarist Robby Krieger. Contrary to popular belief, Jim Morrison didn't write all the lyrics for The Doors. "Light My Fire" was written by Krieger, as was "Touch Me," "Love Her Madly," and "Love Me Two Times." "Light My Fire" is, in many ways, a unique song -- even though it's 7 minutes long, it was widely requested on the radio.

This is unheard of today, but even in the 1960s, DJ's preferred short, catchy songs.

"Light My Fire" remains one of the band's most popular songs, but what made it iconic was "The Ed Sullivan Show" live performance. This is perhaps one of the most important moments in the history of live television. The song was later covered by Jose Felicano, Shirley Bassey, Will Young, Amii Stewart, and others.

Ed Sullivan and The Doors

Mr. Sullivan's son-in-law, who was also the producer of the show, asked the band to change the line "Girl, we couldn't get much higher" to "girl, we couldn't get much better," since the show's sponsors and producers were uncomfortable concerning drug use. The band agreed to do so, and Morrison even sang "better" instead of "higher" during rehearsal.

However, during the live performance, Jim sang the original lyrics. This made Ed Sullivan furious -- he even refused to shake Morrison's hand as the band left the stage. The Doors were supposed to sign a multi-episode deal, but after performing the offensive line, they were informed that they would never do "The Ed Sullivan Show" again.

Reportedly, Morrison responded: "Hey, man, we just 'did' Sullivan."

The incident catapulted The Doors to rock and roll stardom and immortalized Jim Morrison as the ultimate rock star. It has been almost 50 years since that old TV appearance, and even though hundreds of bands have come and gone, none of them have come close to The Doors -- at least when it comes to pure, psychedelic rock and roll music.

Jim Morrison was the personification of a true rock and roll star, and he will live on -- as will his band's music.

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