THE DOORS | MY WILD LOVE | TUESDAY TUNES
Posted on May 19, 2015 by Trace
“MY WILD LOVE WENT RIDIN’
SHE RODE TO THE SEA….”
J u k e b o x
— THE DOORS —
MY WILD LOVE
from their third studio album ‘Waiting for the Sun’
Released in July 1968, this was a band at its most dexterous, creative, and musically diverse.
In his retrospective review, Richie Unterberger of AllMusic wrote “The Doors’ 1967 albums had raised expectations so high that their third effort was greeted as a major disappointment. With a few exceptions, the material was much mellower, and while this yielded some fine melodic ballad rock, there was no denying that the songwriting was not as impressive as it had been on the first two records.” In his review of the 2007 reissue, Sal Cinquemani of Slant wrote “Despite the fact that Morrison was becoming a self-destructing mess, Krieger, Ray Manzarek and John Densmore were never more lucid — perhaps to compensate.
And what of the inspo behind these melodic lyrics? [Interpretation by Madame Ostrich]
Throughout the four and some decades of its existence, there has been much speculation surrounding the song’s meaning. Some argue that the “ride” is a euphemism for Morrison’s long term girlfriend’s heroin addiction. Others attribute the epic nature of the song to Morrison’s fascination with ancient myth. The song possesses an Odyssey-like nature, describing the endless travels of his “wild love” — she rides to the devil, the sea, to Christmas, to the farm, and to Japan.
What is most notable about this particular Doors song is that Morrison sings a cappella — the only instrumentation is from his bandmates humming and clapping as well as a tambourine that continuously keeps the beat throughout the song.
The song is largely spoken word with a tune. It possesses a largely mystical feel, as if Morrison is leading some sort of shamanistic prayer.
And another: [Interpretation by Jay Dixon – Australia]
Originally recorded by the Doors with only vocals and percussion, as a group chant led by Jim Morrison.
In all my reading and research I have never discovered who if anyone inspired Morrison to write these lyrics. A lot of Jim’s poems and lyrics came to fruition from many thoughts and many inspirations. Morrison and Pamela Courson had a very tumultuous relationship and she did burn through money, take off by herself somewhere but always came back, so it is possible that the lyrics could well refer to Pam.
“My wild love went riding, She rode all the day, She wrote to the Devil, And asked him to pay. The Devil was wiser, It’s time to repent. He asked her to give back, The money she spent.”
Jim would often come up with a song inspired from nowhere, here is one example. In 1968 he and Ray Manzarek were walking along a beach talking when a very pretty girl in a bikini passed them without speaking. Jim was so struck by her looks it inspired him to write the song Hello I Love You released later that same year. So My Wild Love may have been inspired by Pam to a degree or by some other woman totally different. The interpretation of his words has long been an enigma and people have devoted a lot of effort into trying to work out meanings and hidden messages.
“Waiting For The Sun” album cover was taken in 1968 by photographer Paul Ferrara in Los Angeles, California. Ferrara can be seen at work on top a car during the photo shoot, below.
“My Wild Love”
She rode all the day
She wrote to the devil
And asked him to pay
The devil was wiser
It’s time to repent
He asked her to give back
The money she spent My wild love went ridin’
She rode to the sea
She gathered together
Some shells for her head
She rode and she rode on
She rode for a while
Then stopped for an evenin’
And lay her head down She rode on to Christmas
She rode to the farm
She rode to Japan
And we entered a town
By this time the river
Had changed one degree
She asked for the people
To let her go free My wild love is crazy
She screams like a bird
She moans like a cat
When she wants to be heard
My wild love went ridin’
She rode for an hour
She rode and she rested
And then she rode on
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