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Because it’s Monday: Let’s Watch a Vintage Ford Training Film With Music by… THE DOORS!

Robert Emslie January 9, 2017 Because it's Monday 9 Comments

Jim Morrison was never a car guy. In fact, a famous story that we discussed a while back demonstrated that he really didn’t give a rat’s ass about cars or driving. Morrison’s notorious abandoned Mustang isn’t the group’s only FoMoCo connection however, as prior to making it big they made some fast cash adding incidental music to this 1966 Ford dealer training film. No, it doesn’t feature Morrison’s poetry about Falcons and Fairlanes—are they really fair?—but it does portend certain sounds that would appear on future Doors albums.

The film, Love Thy Customer, lacks the etherial acid-trip psychedelia that is generally associated with The Doors’ music, but the band wasn’t at a point where its members could afford such luxuries, or even proper recording facilities:

The Doors piled into a cramped screening room at Los Angeles’ Rampart Studios, where they viewed the 25-minute clip on a small monitor. They composed a soundtrack largely on the spot, jamming live as the scenes flickered past. Fragments of what later became “I Looked at You,” “Build Me a Woman,” and “The Soft Parade” can be heard in the finished product. Though they played only instrumental passages, Morrison is said to have contributed percussion and additional sound effects. The day of work earned them $200.

Their music starts to show up at about 1:30 into the film, actually as part of a movie-within-a-movie as one of the white coated “service employees” starts daydreaming when he should be concentrating on “Total Selling.” Ha! Typical Doors fan.


  • I’m surprised they took such a vicious swipe at Studebaker, by name, at 13:29. I guess there’s nothing like kicking someone when they’re down.

    • Alff

      Studebaker got off easy. Ford reserved most of their disdain for the customers in this one.

      • Yeah, but as a long-term Ford owner that part didn’t surprise me.

        • Alff

          …but you’re spoiled by years of owning orphans.

        • Vairship

          Aren’t you more of a long-term Ford part owner?

  • David

    What car are they showing at 4:20 when they play the Chevrolet theme?

    • It’s a later Ford Model T. I’m not that great at pinpointing them, but I’ll say circa 1924-5.

      • David

        Do you think the Doors knew (or cared) that they were playing a competitor’s theme song? If they had shown a Chevy it might make sense that Chevrolet was old and outdated. But since they’re just showing an old Ford I don’t get it.

        • My guess is they may have been instructed to play that, or at least that nobody at Ford objected to the choice, as it would have been a way for Ford to take a slightly more subtle dig at the competition without naming names or showing a competitor’s product, even an outdated one.