DAY IN HISTORY: Rock and roll loses Morrison, Jones

ROCK and roll lost two of its pioneers after Rolling Stones guitarist Brian Jones and legendary The Doors frontman Jim Morrison died two years apart on July 3.

The duo were at the forefront on the music industry in the 1960s with Jones, the original leader off the Stones, stunning music ability creating hit after hit for the English rockers.

Meanwhile on the US west coast, Morrison, the original 'Lizard King', was creating a musical revolution with his charisma, style and hypnotic poetry.

However, Jones and Morrison both succumbed to their generation's infatuation with alcohol and drugs, a catalyst to their downfalls.

Jones quickly fell out with his bandmates, failing to show up for recording sessions and losing the creative spark that so dominated the Stones' early years.

The last straw came when he was denied a visa to the US for an earlier drug conviction.

Lead singer Mick Jagger and fellow guitarist Keith Richards fired Jones in June 1969 and little more than three weeks later, Jones was mysteriously found dead on the bottom of his pool in Sussex.

Rumours of murder persist with conspiracy theorists but the coroner's official ruling was "death by misadventure".

Morrison, meanwhile, seemed to draw inspiration from a world of haze and out-of-body experiences.

The Doors music, accompanied by Morrison's lyrics, transported music fans to a surreal sphere void of any know boundaries.

But this world didn't seem destined to last and so it was when Morrison, in 1971, was found dead in the bathtub of his girlfriend Pamela Courson's apartment in Paris.

Morrison, based on Courson's testimony that he was drug-free at the time of his death, was officially ruled to have suffered a "heart failure".

However, Morrison biographers, Jerry Hopkins and Danny Sugerman, allege that Morrison had died of a heroin overdose. 

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