Retrieved from the vaults for a 50th anniversary box set of The Doors' L.A. Woman is this grittier original demo of "Riders on the Storm" recorded at Sunset Sound Studios. From Rolling Stone:
The original demo moves a little faster than the studio version, and keyboardist Ray Manzarek played piano bass (as opposed to bassist Jerry Scheff's performance on the studio version), giving it a rougher, almost electronic feel. Although it features the same power as the L.A. Woman version, it didn't move [the band's longtime producer Paul] Rothchild. "Paul put his head in his hands and said, 'This is cocktail jazz, I can't do this anymore,'" engineer Bruce Botnick recalls. Rothchild, who had just come off of producing Pearl for Janis Joplin, backed out of L.A. Woman, and the band ended up co-producing the album with Botnick. "With Bruce and us producing, we had more control," Densmore says. "It was a joy. It only took a few weeks to make."
While overseeing the reissue, Botnick recently discovered the long-forgotten demo on what he called a hub, the aluminum center of a reel that the tapes wound around. That one take was all that was on the unlabeled hub.