In 2002, John Densmore of the Doors wrote an article for The Guardian in which he discussed how the band has continuously turned down endorsements and commercials over the years. This includes John saying no to a deal paying up to $1 million to promote a weight loss program.
The drummer also told the story of when the band said yes to allowing Buick to use their hit, “Light My Fire,” for an Opel car commercial in 1967. Bandmates John, Ray Manzarek, and Robby Krieger agreed to the deal while Jim Morrison was out of town. Once Jim heard about the commercial, the late singer-songwriter made efforts to ensure the track wouldn’t be used in the car ads.
“[Jim] came back and went nuts,” John said. “In retrospect, his calling up Buick and saying that if they aired the ad, he would smash an Opel on television with a sledgehammer, was fantastic. I guess that is one of the reasons why I miss the guy.”
Jim’s viewpoint inspired the band to maintain this attitude toward the idea of having their music featured in ads. Robby was quoted in the article as he explained how the group’s choice would ultimately preserve the worth of their music.
“If we’re only one of two or three groups who don’t do commercials, that will help the value of our songs in the long run,” Robby said. “The publishing will suffer a little, but we should be proud of our stance.”