Does it really matter who killed Jim Morrison?

Was Jim Morrison murdered? The short answer is surely no, despite Marianne Faithfull’s rather belated and strangely throwaway remark to Mojo magazine that she knows “who killed” him in Paris in 1971. Morrison was a heroin addict and alcoholic who died in a bathtub following some kind of fatal ingestion of narcotics, and whether or not it was Faithfull’s drug dealing ex-boyfriend Jean De Breiteull who sold him his last fix, or even administered a lethal dose, is surely moot. Fatality rates among hardcore drug users are high for a reason.

The real question is why these myths of rock and roll murder persist. The cover of the latest issue of Mojo declares "Brian Jones: It Was Murder," while inside a feature reheats investigator Terry Rawlings 45-year-old conspiracy theory about the death by drowning of the Rolling Stone (repeatedly discounted by police).

Like Jones and Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and, more recently, Amy Winehouse all died at the young age of 27 as a consequence of hedonistic lifestyle choices, and there have been rumours and conspiracy theories surrounding them ever since. Even Kurt Cobain’s suicide aged 27 in 1994 has been repeatedly questioned.

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