Doors -Break On Through (To The Other Side)

When I went through my Doors phase as a teen…this one was one of the songs that drew me in. I still like the band but I have sympathy for the members not named Morrison. When they played live in the later part of their career…he could be a handful.

This was the first song on The Doors debut album, and also their first single. It got some airplay on Los Angeles radio stations after their friends and fans kept requesting it. Light My Fire…did just that after this single. Break On Through peaked at #126 in the Billboard Charts, #64 in the UK, and #28 in New Zealand in 1967.

“She gets high,” was in the original chorus but their producer Paul Rothchild thought that would limit the song’s airplay potential, and convinced the group to leave it out. Instead, “high” was edited out, making it sound like, “she get uuggh,” but the “high” line can be heard in live versions and the high was restored in the 1999 remaster.

Elektra Records boss Jac Holzman commissioned a promotional film for this song…later known as a music video. Like The Beatles, The Doors were innovators in the music video medium, creating films of various kinds to their songs. Videos saved bands’ trips to TV studios to mime their latest record. MTV used them as their business plan two decades later.

Doors Billboard Break On Through

Elektra Records promoted the album with a billboard on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood with a photo of the band and the headline, “The Doors Break On Through With An Electrifying Album.” It gave a lot of attention to the band at the time.

John Rechy’s 1963 book City of Night was a huge influence on Morrison in writing this song. There is a passage that Rechy wrote “place to place, week to week, night to night” and Jim turned it into Made the scene, Week to week, Day to day, Hour to hour.

Jim Morrison: “I like ideas about the breaking away or overthrowing of the established order. I am interested in anything about revolt, disorder, chaos, especially activity that seems to have no meaning.”

Break On Through (To The Other Side)

You know the day destroys the night
Night divides the day
Tried to run
Tried to hide
Break on through to the other side
Break on through to the other side
Break on through to the other side, yeah

We chased our pleasures here
Dug our treasures there
But can you still recall
The time we cried?
Break on through to the other side
Break on through to the other side

Come on, yeah

Everybody loves my baby
Everybody loves my baby
She get
She get
She get
She get high

I found an island in your arms
Country in your eyes
Arms that chain us
Eyes that lie
Break on through to the other side
Break on through to the other side
Break on through, oww
Oh, yeah

Made the scene
Week to week
Day to day
Hour to hour
The gate is straight
Deep and wide
Break on through to the other side
Break on through to the other side
Break on through
Break on through
Break on through
Break on through
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah


Author: Badfinger (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

33 thoughts on “Doors -Break On Through (To The Other Side)”

  1. I’m not big on The Doors but I will say this tune and Roadhouse Blues are good tracks. Light My Fire can someone unplug that swirling keyboard as it gets to me lol
    Can’t believe the song originally only got to 126 on the charts…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. LOL… don’t like that sound do ya?
      I’m not a huge fan either but I do like some of their songs. I like LA Woman also.


  2. Jim Morrison encouraged a whole generation to break free from all their limitations, to open their minds to new ideas and let their imaginations transcend their consciousness, so they could be free, move beyond this world and live their lives beyond any preconceived limits. These insightful lyrics, “You know the day destroys night. Night divides the day.” involve a light side and a dark side, things that are known and things which are unknown.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. He did that…some good and some bad. I met a guy who met them and knows Robbie Krieger… Jim wasn’t an idea bandmate but yea…he was the icon for sure.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I don’t like to watch him sing because his devastatingly good looks are distracting. The lyrics in this are poetry. “The day destroys night” “Night divides the day” “I found an island in your arms”
    “Country in your eyes” It’s not my favorite Doors song, but I like it.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. like you I guess, I was much more into the Doors back in the early-90s (when the movie came out especially) than I am now, but they put out some good, and ground-breaking, records. Jim had a great voice and delivery and was a good, if at times unnervingly dark, lyricist. This is kind of in the middle of the pack among my favorite Doors songs. I find the one thing I like a lot about them is the thing many people hate – Ray Manzarek’s prominent keyboards.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yep! Unlike our friend Deke… I do like the keyboards… they are a band that you can pick out each instrument because they were all unique in their playing. I don’t think Morrison would have had as big of an impact with another group of musicians.


  5. I remember seeing them live in Dallas. I believe KLIF AM radio brought them to town and as usual, a local band opened and the KLIF DJ spent much too long on stage running his DJ thing. This would have been around 67-68, and even though Memorial Auditorium had an awful sound system, they still managed to sound great. Morrison was well behaved and the show was killer. Also, there is no Apocolypse now without their music weaved throughout the movie.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I generally dig the doors and love this song. Shockingly, I also like Manzarek’s keyboard playing. Since The Doors didn’t have a bassist, he covered that part with his bass pedals.

    Their eponymous first studio album was a strong debut. Between this tune, “Light My Fire” and “The End”, you had three classics.

    Liked by 2 people

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