The Doors ‘Soft Parade’ 50th Anniversary: Listen

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The Doors’ fourth studio album, The Soft Parade, became the band’s fourth straight top 10 album when it was released 50 years ago on July 18, 1969. Despite featuring one of the group’s biggest hits, “Touch Me,” it remains the most-polarizing record of The Doors’ career thanks to the brass and string arrangements that embellish several tracks.

To commemorate the album’s 50-year anniversary, Rhino is releasing The Soft Parade on a newly expanded 3-CD/1-LP set that will be available on Nov. 1. The Soft Parade: 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition includes the original studio album and the B-side “Who Scared You,” newly remastered by Bruce Botnick, the Doors’ longtime engineer and mixer. The collection is a limited edition of 15,000 individually numbered copies and also includes the original album on 180-gram vinyl along with liner notes by rock journalist David Fricke.

A hand-numbered 36×18 lithograph of the interior vinyl gatefold artwork, limited to 500 copies, is available with The Soft Parade: 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition exclusively at and while supplies last.

Listen to the 2019 remaster of the title track

The core of the new collection is composed of more than a dozen unreleased songs. Among the highlights are stripped-down “Doors Only” versions of five tracks where the horns and strings have been removed (“Tell All the People,” “Touch Me,” “Wishful Sinful,” “Runnin’ Blue” and “Who Scared You.”)

The set also features three of those stripped-back versions with new guitar parts added by Robby Krieger (“Touch Me,” “Wishful Sinful,” and “Runnin’ Blue”).

Listen to the “Doors only mix” of “Touch Me,” released on September 19, and note the difference, particularly at the 2:26 mark

The collection also uncovers three songs from studio rehearsals, with keyboardist Ray Manzarek on vocals, including an early version of “Roadhouse Blues,” a song that would be released the following year on Morrison Hotel. These three songs include newly recorded bass parts by Robert DeLeo of Stone Temple Pilots, who joined Krieger and drummer John Densmore at a tribute concert for Manzarek in 2016, three years after the organist died of cancer.

Listen to “Roadhouse Blues” with Ray Manzarek on vocals

A trio of studio outtakes collected on the set’s final disc feature the much-bootlegged, hour-long jam, “Rock Is Dead,” which appears here in its entire, surviving form for the first time ever. The track finds the Doors riffing through the entire history of rock ’n’ roll, from early delta blues through surf music, ending with the death of rock.

Watch the Doors perform “Wild Child” and “Touch Me” on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour

Related: Our Album Rewind review of the Doors’ Strange Days 

Best Classic Bands Staff

2 Comments so far

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  1. Gman
    #1 Gman 24 July, 2019, 15:42

    The Monk bought Lunch

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    • Booby
      Booby 30 October, 2019, 19:50

      Haha, yeah I think Morrison thought any off the wall bs lyric would pass as poetry. Love the Doors but c’mon.

      Reply this comment

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