by Jim Cherry.
Summer’s almost gone, for us. You can imagine Jim Morrison writing Summer’s Almost Gone as he came down from his vision quest on Dennis Jakob’s roof, a bittersweet elegy to at once the end of the season and possibly love.
The song, at first, almost sounds simple, it could almost be a classic California song of sun, sand, and surf, but nothing in Jim Morrison’s lyrics or The Doors music is that easy. Summer’s Almost Gone sounds almost funereal and the lyrics mourn the end of a season asking the question of “where will we be when the summer’s gone?” and the carefree days when “noon burned gold in our hair,” the simple answer would be Autumn. Then Jim throws in a literary curve with the double entendre in the line “where will we be when summer’s gone?” Addressed to a lover the lyric takes on a more plaintive tone and question, where will WE be? Or is the answer to Jim’s question that we move on to Wintertime Love?
Summer’s Almost Gone was in The Doors’ repertoire quite early and is included in the demos cut at World Pacific Studios in September 1965 (see video in left hand column), and after The Doors recorded with Elektra they didn’t include the song on either of the first two albums. The song was resurrected for The Doors third album, Waiting for the Sun, after Jim’s poetic opus Celebration of the Lizard was cut from the album and they needed to fill out the album, and Summer’s Almost Gone was brought back. The Doors reworked and polished Summer’s Almost Gone but not dramatically, it still had the lilting melody and plaintive lyrics of the demo.