It has been over 4 years since Hollywood resident and Rock and Roll Historian Brett Meisner first noticed a strange image in the background of a photo taken of him at the gravesite of former Doors’ front man Jim Morrison at the Pere Lachaise Cemetery in Paris, France. After having the photograph and original negative analyzed by dozens of paranormal and photographic experts, there is still little explanation as to how or why the ghostly image appeared in the photo. Some believe it is a forgery, while others simply think it is just a ray of sunlight playing an odd trick on the human eye. For Brett Meisner, the photo has become a black cloud of bad luck hanging over his head, and he is now looking for a way to get rid of this infamous and very controversial piece of rock and roll history.
Brett Meisner barely recalled the 1997 candid graveside photo shoot when an assistant showed him the photo in 2002, pointing out the clearly visible iconic image of Jim Morrison in the background. “I have collected a lot of rock memorabilia over the past few decades so I figured he was playing a joke on me,” explains Meisner. “But once we found the negative and made larger prints, it was quite clear to all of us that we had something odd and unique on our hands.”
Once word of the Morrison ghost photograph spread across the Internet, both skeptics and avid Doors fans came knocking on Meisner’s door. A British film crew from the show “Dead Famous” even flew to Los Angeles, bringing along paranormal expert Chris Fleming who called the photo “one of the best I’ve ever seen.” This publicity led to appearances on the Biography channel and several prominent radio programs, but Meisner began to realize the photo was causing more harm than good.
“I’ve had strangers come to my home at all hours of the night wanting to talk to me saying they had messages from Jim,” explained Meisner. “At first it was sort of interesting to see how many people felt a spiritual bond with Jim and the photo, but now the whole vibe seems negative.”
A failed marriage and the loss of a young friend to a drug overdose were just a few of the tragedies that have befallen Brett Meisner since he rediscovered the photograph. “I’ve lost some high paying clients and nothing but bad luck has plagued me for the past few years.” A spiritual adviser and close friend recently told Meisner that they believe the photograph is part of a curse and that he needs to find a respectful way to part with the image and bring closure to both Brett and the spirit of Morrison.
“Part of me wishes that I would have never stepped foot into the graveyard in the first place,” admits Meisner. “While I also know I’m partly to blame for talking about it in the first place. I should have kept it to myself and not let the media have a field day with something so special and private.
Meisner is currently trying to find a private and reputable organization to donate the photos and negative. So far he has no takers.
Jim Morrison’s gravesite in Pere Lachaise is one of the most popular tourist attractions in a cemetery filled with literary and cultural icons such as Oscar Wilde, Honore de Balzac and Frederic Chopin. Over a thousand people each day visit the gravesite where Morrison was laid to rest in July 1971. Often the crowds are unruly and festive, a fact that is looked down upon by the surviving family members of the nearby graves. In fact, the French government almost moved the body of Morrison in 2001 when the 30 year lease expired, citing his gravesite a nuisance and unwanted attraction. However, pressure from the local artistic community helped keep Jim safe and secure in his final resting place.