On Sept. 17, 1967, The Doors were scheduled for a live performance on The Ed Sullivan Show. It’s reported that 15 minutes prior to the broadcast, Ed Sullivan visited The Doors’ dressing room and talked briefly about the afternoon’s rehearsal, “You boys look great, [but] you ought to smile a little more.” Minutes later, one of the show’s producers stopped in to tell the group they needed to change a word in the lyrics for “Light My Fire” (“Girl, we couldn’t get much higher”) because “higher” was inappropriate for a nationally televised family show.
It’s said the band told the executive they would make changes as requested, but after the producer left, Morrison stated, “We’re not changing a word.” Being the last act of the evening’s broadcast, the group had an hour wait before taking the stage — and in that time, united behind Morrison’s vow.
Clips of the performance are regularly removed from YouTube—except for this 51-second video advertisement to sell DVDs of musical performances on Sullivan’s show (which is ironic because, after the performance, Sullivan was livid and banned the The Doors from future appearances. They never did perform in the Ed Sullivan Theater again).
Here’s a different live performance of “Light My Fire”: http://youtu.be/6O6x_m4zvFs