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Rock Hall Anniversary: The Doors’ Controversial Miami Concert

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March 1st, 1969 marked a real controversial moment for the Doors. In fact, for a band who have seen controversy before (hence their 1967 Ed Sullivan performance), this one would truly “take the cake”, and almost derail the band.

It was at this time the Doors gave a performance at the Dinner Key Auditorium in Miami, Florida, before a crowd of 12,000 people. Lead singer Jim Morrison was said to be drunk, subjected the audience to periods of silence, and during the medley of “Back Door Man” and “Five to One”, he was also taunting the crowd with various messages, including one that called the audience "a bunch of idiots."

Yet the biggest shocker of the performance, occurred during the song “Touch Me”, when Morrison allegedly exposed himself, which was soon debated as some people including the Doors said that never happen. Either way, a warrant would be issued for Morrison’s arrest on March 5th, and he was charged with indecent exposure and profanity, following the cancellation of many Doors concerts, to follow the one in Miami. In September 1970, Morrison was convicted and sentenced to six months hard labor, plus ordered to pay a $500 fine. He would remain free, having filed an appeal on the conviction, but Morrison died before it could be legally resolved.

On December 9, 2010, Morrison was granted a posthumous pardon from the charges stemming from the Miami concert, officially putting the matter to a close.

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