The Doors were honored during the 2012 Sunset Strip Music Festival in West Hollywood. The classic L.A. band's music was ahead of its time in the 1960s and still holds up extremely well today.
The festival played out on three outdoor stages with headliners Dead Sara, Black Label Society, Bad Religion, The Offspring, Marilyn Manson and Steve Aoki.
With so many stages -- and clubs -- going at once, it was impossible to see and hear everything the festival had to offer.
Dead Sara was late starting up its first performance on the main outdoor stage. The band performed in the festival's indoor venues in the past as a support act. Dead Sara put on a such a revved-up performance that it was well worth the wait in the heat. The short but cranked-up performance ended with their recent hit single, "Weatherman." Lead singer/guitarist Emily Armstrong and guitarist Siouxsie Medley are the power behind the four-piece band. Armstrong is a Tasmanian-like, angelic-singing, rock-screaming siren, a fierce whirlwind of energy. She also blew away the crowd at the Doors tribute on Aug. 16 at the House of Blues, with a cover of "Soul Kitchen." When we asked her about playing with the surviving members of The Doors, she responded gleefully, "It was euphoric!"
Black Label Society came on after Dead Sara, with a heavy guitar-based set that got the crowd moshing. Before the show, we managed to catch Zakk Wylde at the Viper Room and asked how he felt about doing the festival this year. "It's awesome, every year it's gone on, I was just like, 'I've got to get us on the Sunset Strip Festival,' " he said. "It's definitly cool, and obviously now we are in the country, and we are not running around touring, so it worked out great."
Bad Religion, longtime leaders in the L.A. punks scene also played a good, steady set.
Marilyn Manson took the stage with a stellar, yet strange, erratic performance. But then it's Marilyn Manson, so maybe his deep, dark, mind-boggling songs are not so strange. The blowout performance ended with Manson's sinewy versions of "Love Me Two Times," "Five to One," and "People Are Strange," alongside Doors' keyboardist Ray Manzarek and guitarist Robby Krieger.
The Monster Energy East Outdoor stage had such performers such as The Mogli's, T Mills, De La Soul and Far East Movement. At the venues such as the Key Club, Whisky A Go-Go, The Roxy, the 98.7 FM Stage outside The Roxy, the Plush Lounge and the Viper Room, about 50 other acts performed.
Ozzy Osborne was the festival's first honoree in 2009, which was attended by 9,500 people. In 2010, Slash was honored, and festival attendance climbed to 13,000. In 2011, the honor went to Motley Crue, bringing the festival attendance up to 30,000 for the three-day weekend. The plan for 2012 was to cap attendance at 15,000, co-producer Nic Adler told the Santa Monica Mirror before the festival.