Were things between you, Ray and Robby acrimonious before the Cadillac ad and before they toured using The Doors name?
“No. No, not really.”
You prevailed in court, and you did eventually manage to bury the hatchet with Ray and Robby.
“Yeah. Thank God.”
Who made the first move?
“Before the book was published, I sent the last chapter with a note to Ray and Robby saying, ‘This might be a hard pill, this book, but I wanted to make sure you got to this. This is where I say I love you guys. How could I not? We’re musical brothers.’ Then when I heard that Ray was getting really sick, I called him… Thank God we had that closing phone call. When he passed, I said to Robby, ‘Let’s try to honor Ray with a concert or something,’ which we’re still struggling with.”
If Ray hadn’t become ill, do you think the three of you might have performed again?
“Yeah, but I don’t know in what way. Maybe we could have done some jazz. I just don’t want to fall into the trap of replacing Jim. He’s irreplaceable. When we did that VH1 Storytellers, it was six singers, and I liked that. I said to Robby, ‘Hey, let’s go on the road with six singers. Or four. That way we wouldn’t fall into the trap.”
In his testimony during the trial, Ray changed the account of your last conversation with Jim. [John laughs] He said that you told Jim how you wanted him to come back and go on tour. Was that ever really a hope within the band?
“No, no… In his book, he said that I called Jim begging him to come back, and I said, ‘Ray, c’mon, that’s ludicrous.’ And then he changed it in the paperback or something, saying that Jim called me. I mean, Ray wasn’t in my house eavesdropping on the phone call. How would he know what the fuck was said? [Laughs] Excuse me, Ray.
“I mean, may the great Ray rest in peace. I’ve been thinking about how great and unique he was to the band. To split his brain and be the bass player for the band with his left hand – it’s just miraculous.”