The making of the album, on its 40th anniversary:
“This is not a blues city. L.A. is about the concealment of appearance, but the blues is about its unraveling. The blues is the opposite of bullshit. And the psychic unrest of L.A. Woman is prominently placed on the album cover, which drops in April ’71. Jim Morrison is shunted off to the side like a dwarf Russian woodcutter or an American werewolf about to ruin Paris. The border is blood red; the faces of the band, choleric yellow.
“‘Jim was seduced by the luxury and indulgences of fame,’ Manzarek says now. Always bespoke and bespectacled, he has a voice as smooth as soy milk. In 1971, he splits time between a two-bedroom near the Whisky and a small penthouse on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. ‘The more boorish the behavior, the more Morrison’s crew liked it. We confronted him, and he said he was trying to quit drinking. But he was a guy who would say, “I feel lousy. I need a drink.” Conversely, “I feel great, I need a drink.” ’ “