The End (17:29)

Cover of Live in New York

From Live in New York and 37 other releases

“The End” is a song by The Doors. Originally a song Jim Morrison wrote about breaking up with a long time girlfriend, it evolved through months of performances at Los Angeles’ Whisky a Go Go into a nearly 12-minute opus on their self-titled album. The band would perform the song to close their last set. It was first released in January 1967.

• Music

Robby Krieger’s slinky, haunting guitar lines over D drone in DADGAD tuning using a harmonic minor scale recall Indian drone and raga-based music, as has often been noted, and the rolling and dramatic crescendoes of John Densmore’s drums recall Indian tabla rhythms. The music as a whole, though, does not sound entirely or even particularly “Indian”. The sharp, ringing edge of the guitar recalls the 50s rock and roll style, while the fingerpicking attack may derive equally from the flamenco guitar style Krieger had studied as a youth and from folk music. Ray Manzarek’s organ is used sparingly to provide an inconspicuous bass line (I-V-I-V-I-V…) and fills. One may find a strong similarity to Chopin’s “Funeral March” theme and also to Sandy Bull’s guitar instrumental “Blend” - but this may be more to do with the quality of the melodic minor scale than with any specific influence.

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