The Hollywood Bowl

We're lucky to have former Doors road manager Vince Treanor here to answer fan questions and share some of his memories. Ask Vince about anything related to the equipment The Doors used, stage set-ups, specific concerts, the band after Jim's death, and working on the Oliver Stone movie.

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Moses
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The Hollywood Bowl

Post by Moses »

Hello again Vince, thanks for the great answer to my previous questions.

One of my ver favorite shows is The Hollywood Bowl. The experts and critics didn't seem to care much for it, I think it's a masterpiece.

What was the deal with the house lights and Jim's one sided discussion with the unseen Mr. Lightman? Who ran the lights at most shows? Someone from the venue or someone from the band?

It was rumored Jim was on LSD for that show. Do you know anything about that or care to comment one way or another?

Is there anything you remember special about that show?

And thanks again for being here, your words and knowledge are bits of pure gold for those of us mining for the dirt and sifting thru the mud on The Doors.

mj
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Re: The Hollywood Bowl

Post by Arden »

Moses wrote:Hello again Vince, thanks for the great answer to my previous questions.

One of my ver favorite shows is The Hollywood Bowl. The experts and critics didn't seem to care much for it, I think it's a masterpiece.

What was the deal with the house lights and Jim's one sided discussion with the unseen Mr. Lightman? Who ran the lights at most shows? Someone from the venue or someone from the band?

It was rumored Jim was on LSD for that show. Do you know anything about that or care to comment one way or another?

Is there anything you remember special about that show?

And thanks again for being here, your words and knowledge are bits of pure gold for those of us mining for the dirt and sifting thru the mud on The Doors.

mj
Mike, you are incorrigible! :wink:
Moses
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Re: The Hollywood Bowl

Post by Moses »

Arden wrote:
Moses wrote:Hello again Vince, thanks for the great answer to my previous questions.

One of my ver favorite shows is The Hollywood Bowl. The experts and critics didn't seem to care much for it, I think it's a masterpiece.

What was the deal with the house lights and Jim's one sided discussion with the unseen Mr. Lightman? Who ran the lights at most shows? Someone from the venue or someone from the band?

It was rumored Jim was on LSD for that show. Do you know anything about that or care to comment one way or another?

Is there anything you remember special about that show?

And thanks again for being here, your words and knowledge are bits of pure gold for those of us mining for the dirt and sifting thru the mud on The Doors.

mj
Mike, you are incorrigible! :wink:

Awwww whadda we care?
Whisky Whisky Whisky I wish I could be with ye, but my friends are Whisky Whisky Whisky.

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Hwd Bowl

Post by vince »

Mike - Appologies for the delay.

Let's dispense withthe drug issue - I have no ideawhat Jim injested prior to a show. I was not in the dressing room and not socializing with the Guys. I had my work to do and it was nervewracking to worry about what might go wrong.

The person who controlled the lighting at that performance was part of the house crew of the Bowl. I believe, Bill Siddons was trying to imitate the expertise of Chip Monk who was the father of the West Coat theatrical lighting. His influence brough on the design and construction of the lighting fixtures and control systems that is in widespread use today.

I worked with Chip on several occasions within and without the Doors. He was a good teacher and a patient guy - until something went wrong.
Whereas I believe that there was no shame in being a student of a master craftsman, Bill felt that he needed noone to teach him. The results are hisdirection at HwdBowl.

Remember, however, thatthewhole event was being filmed. Where Jim wanted lights turned outand such, changed tosuit his mood, the camera people were having fits - afraid that it would happen and change all their preplanned shots and lighting plan for the movie.

On many of the later venues I did lighting. In the early ones Bill did it.

The critics panned the Bowl and so did the Doors themselves. It was not one of theirbest, though I think it was Good. They were Home Town Nervous. Instead ofconcentrating on the presentation of a really planned and very theatrical set, they poured countless hours into spectacular lighting and other ineffective indulgences.
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Thanks for the reply

Post by Moses »

Sounds to me like Siddons generally went about with is head up his culo.
Whisky Whisky Whisky I wish I could be with ye, but my friends are Whisky Whisky Whisky.

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Siddons

Post by vince »

It would, on the surface seem that way. But there were many more things that Bill did that worked out well. Let's remember that when appointed as Manager he was 20. The biggest and most important agents in the US were after that job and the beach boy surfer, got the job. Of course he was on a tight leash.

Still me did manage the bookings and other business faily well. He had a good head for that.

He was always paranoid of me because I made a suggestions to the guys that I be the choice for manager. Older, wiser, and more excperienced in business. I was the oldest member of the team. Bill the youngest and as far as having authority over guys where are older than you - it does not always come out well.

They made a choice and I respected that choice and went on to do my job. Bill never forgot my intrucion into what he thought was a secure nomination for the job. He got the job, they signed a contract and he was secure in his position. He never looked at it that way and went on to make my life as miserable as he could.

This was a foolish attitude sine we all worked for the same group and the objectives should have been co-operative to get the job done as well and efficiently as possible.

It did not matter. I did my job, he did his. I was succesfull, he lost his lead singer and was eventually officially dismissed. Sugarman took over and the rest is history.
Bill was not really a bad guy. Just young, impetuous and on an ego trip in which there was room for only one. His.
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Post by J.B.Marx »

Jagger was also at that show. I read that he wasn't that excited about the show. Is that true?
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Hwd Bowl:

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Noone wasreallysatisfiedwiththeBowl. It was home town nervesand the thought that they should put on some kind of spectacular presentation. It just did not work.

For me, I felt that the music was good though a bit restrained. Still we had shows that were a disaster when compared with this one. We tried to make this a really good display of power. We had assembled more amps on that stage than any group had used before, or, for that matter, for quite some time after.

But they were talking about dancing girls and special lights and all sorts of distractions.

Mick Jagger was at the bowl and before the show spent time in the dressing room with the guys. Yes, he was not overly impressed with the show - again, though the music was good they were very consertive.

I think the filming might have also had something to do with this. There were 4 camera running, if I remember correctly. Paul Ferrara was the on stage comera, closest to Jim and the group. Others were taking the action from different angles, including an overall shot from the audience area.

I cannot really say why the show lacked the spontaniety of some of the others. I am sure that there was more than one reason. I know one thing, technically, it was perfect.

I remember someone asked me if I played instruments. Yes, I played the Gun in Unknown Soldier.

The gunshot at the bowl was spectacular. We had a test shot on July 4th. The shot heard "Round Hollywood".

The bowl was an adventure for us, taking two days and one long night to set up. Of course we had a run-in with the local unions but we got around that all right. While they were there, we could not do much. But when they went home, under the cover of night.... Well, When the Cat is away, the mice will play.
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Post by J.B.Marx »

Sounds like a very tough but 'fun' job.
The amps are indeed very impressive. I always thought that it is more show then that they all really work. Were they all connected?

I also read that Jagger first met the Doors in a place at the otherside of the Doors office. They got a phone call that Jagger was on his way, they looked out the window & there he was walking out of the Doors office towards them. I guess you couldn't say if this really happened or what they did, cause you probably were working your ass of to get all ends together for the big show?
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HwdBowl

Post by vince »

The amps all worked. Every one of them had a purpose.

We moved the equipment in on 7-03. about noontime. The union crew unloaded the amps and put them where they thought they should be. We kept trying to get them io line as we had originally planned but the union guys insisted that we could not handle the amps. So we waited. That night we worked under a full moon. It was so brightall we needed wasflashlights to see where to put the pulgs in- the back of the amp line faced north and was incomplete shadow.

WE got the whole linepulled down and with the help ofacouple of other BB Ken Kawalski and I moved averything out of line and then reset the amps as we wanted. Then we wired it and tested it by turning it on and using the tuning pitch built into the amp heads we made sure that everything was working and in the right place.

Atabout 04:00 we finallyquit and slept right there on stage.Wecould not leave the equipment anyway. The next day was 07.04 and at exactly12:00 we "Fired the Shot for the Unknown Soldier and that caused a stir. The guys came in late afternoon to rehearse.

John said something like"Vince hasbeen at it again" Robby asked "Did we buy all these?" Ray walked on stage and played a couple of notes on the pianobass. "Wow!, That is loud, Nice work, Vince!!"

SOmething top that effect.


I knew Jagger was around. We were in the Bowl for 3 days. On the night of the 4th we took shifts with the equipment so everyone could get cleaned upand sleep in a real bed.

Mick came to thebowl and stayed with the guys in the dressing room until show time. I guess he went out front for the show.
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Post by J.B.Marx »

Nice story Vince!

So about what amount of watt are we talking? It must have been LOUD. Gues if you were in the neighbourhood you could dance on some doors tunes for free. :D
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Post by J.B.Marx »

Nice story Vince!

So about what amount of watt are we talking? It must have been LOUD. Gues if you were in the neighbourhood you could dance on some doors tunes for free. :D
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What Watt

Post by vince »

Well we had something like 24 amps each one with 200 Watts.

Mind you, at that time this was big wattage. Today, with the effort to deafen everyone in the hall you might multiply that by at least ten.

They could hear it on Hollywood Boulevard. That was nearly 1 mile away from the bowl. The Acoustic amps relied on science rather than brute force to get the point across.

When we fired the shot on the 4th, we heard that it could be heard as far as Sunset at Highland. Of course, that was a special sound with special characteristics. No doubt this contributed much to the distance over which it could be heard.
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Post by The Freedom Man »

Can any Hell Be More Horrible Than Now In Real?
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The Bowl

Post by vince »

Well, there is the story.

That picture was taken afterLondon 1968. I was young and beautiful then. Well, OK, Young.

Somewhere I have a collor slide - 4" X 5" of that stage. It was impressive.


Those were the days, mylove....
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Post by J.B.Marx »

That was a nice story. Liked reading it. Wish I was there.
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