Ray Manzarek, 74, the keyboardist and founding member of the Doors, who had a dramatic impact on rock and roll, died Monday.
Publicist Heidi Robinson-Fitzgerald said Mr. Manzarek died at the RoMed Clinic in Rosenheim, Germany, surrounded by his family. Robinson-Fitzgerald said his manager, Tom Vitorino, confirmed the death. Mr. Manzarek had bile duct cancer.
Mr. Manzarek founded the Doors after meeting Jim Morrison in California. The band became one of the most successful rock acts of the 1960s and continues to resonate with fans decades after Morrison's death brought it to an effective end.
The Chicago native remained active in music after Morrison's 1971 death. He tried to hold the band together by serving as vocalist, but it fell apart. He played in other bands over the years, produced other acts, became an author, and worked on films.
The Doors were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Mr. Manzarek's lead-instrument work with the band at a time when the guitar often dominated added a distinct end-times flavor that matched Morrison's imagery and persona.
The group is best known for hits such as "L.A. Woman," "Break on Through to the Other Side," "The End," and "Light My Fire," a song particularly colored by his keyboard work.