10 songs about other artists

Here are ten songs written about other artists. The list below is not the final word, but represents the start of a conversation. The idea is to explore some of our favourite artists singing about other artists. In most cases the songs are celebratory or pay tribute, others simply observe or comment and one here is not very complimentary. So, having set the ball rolling, I’m passing it over to you folks. I’m sure that the collective knowledge and wisdom of the AUK readership can come up with many more great additions. Please post them in the comments section at the bottom of the page. I hope that you enjoy my selections and I look forward to hearing yours. Continue reading “10 songs about other artists”

Cash Back In Fife, Woodside Hotel, Aberdour, Fife, 6th – 8th March 2020

A new addition to the Scottish music scene, Cash Back In Fife is a weekend of music dedicated to the memory of Johnny Cash and in particular, Cash’s delight at discovering he had ancestors who had come to the new world from the ancient kingdom of Fife in Scotland. It’s the brainchild of Dean Owens, the singer songwriter from Leith who has previously released an album of songs sung by, written, or inspired by Cash. That album, ‘Cash Back (Songs I Learned From Johnny)’ led on to a successful Edinburgh Festival Fringe show and when Owens heard of Cash’s links to Fife, allied to his discovery of a relatively new music venue in the Fife village of Aberdour, well, something clicked. Continue reading “Cash Back In Fife, Woodside Hotel, Aberdour, Fife, 6th – 8th March 2020”

The ten worst Johnny Cash tracks

Johnny Cash was a force of nature. There are not enough superlatives in the dictionary to do the man any kind of justice. J.R. was a magnificent songwriter. Just as magnificent, perhaps even more so, was he an interpreter of other people’s songs. However, in an (almost) fifty-year recording career, during a time when labels demanded and released two or three albums per year, The Man In Black gave us over ninety long players. Surely some songs must have slipped past quality control? Particularly during Cash’s ‘lean period’, spanning the mid-1970s up to the first ‘American Recordings’ in 1994? Continue reading “The ten worst Johnny Cash tracks”

Bob Dylan “Bootleg Series 15: Travellin’ Thru” (Columbia Records, 2019)

The first impression of ‘Bootleg Series 15: Travelin’ Thru‘ is how small it looks in comparison to recent releases in the Dylan archive series – we’ve been spoilt of course but this is no ‘Live ’66 Complete Recordings‘ or ‘More Blood, More Tracks‘. Three CDs and an illustrated background booklet make up the contents of the small box covering Dylan’s activities from 1967-1969. Disc One covers both ‘John Wesley Harding‘ and ‘Nashville Skyline‘ outtakes, Disc Two is material culled from a two hour session with Johnny Cash which continues onto Disc Three which also has Dylan’s appearance on the Johnny Cash show, two outtakes from ‘Self Portrait‘ and the material recorded for the ‘Earl Scruggs. His Family & Friends‘ film. And if that all sounds a trifle “bitty” then that’s because it is quite “bitty”. Continue reading “Bob Dylan “Bootleg Series 15: Travellin’ Thru” (Columbia Records, 2019)”

Watch YouTube’s new Johnny Cash documentary

YouTube Originals have begun to stream the new documentary  ‘The Gift: The Journey of Johnny Cash’, which is a 90-minute film directed by Emmy- and Grammy-winning filmmaker Thom Zimny and which includes commentary from Emmylou Harris and Bruce Springsteen along with members of the Cash family, including his daughter Rosanne Cash and son John Carter Cash. RS Country have a nice piece up on it here, or you can jump straight to the film below if you have an hour and a half to spare.

Johnny Cash official website relaunches with extensive content

We leave you this weekend dear reader with news that the official Johnny Cash website over at johnnycash.com has relaunched and now includes Cash’s tour history, both solo and with the Highwaymen, with nearly 4300 show dates listed – according to RS – “from his 1954 debut in West Memphis, Arkansas, to his last public performance in 2003 at the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia — arranged chronologically and supplemented in many cases by setlists. Some feature photos and video from the respective concert date.”  Which sounds like a lost weekend coming up to us. Have a good one.

New Cash tribute album features Jayhawks, Mellencamp and others

Legacy Recordings have announced the release of ‘Johnny Cash: Forever Words’ – a collaborative album consisting of songs created from Johnny Cash’s unknown poetry, lyrics, and letters set to music by an array of  artists on Friday 6th April. The album features new performances by Chris Cornell, Ruston Kelly & Kacey Musgraves, Rosanne Cash, Alison Krauss & Union Station, Kris Kristofferson & Willie Nelson, Brad Paisley, John Mellencamp, Carlene Carter, Elvis Costello and The Jayhawks. Continue reading “New Cash tribute album features Jayhawks, Mellencamp and others”

Johnny Cash “Greatest Hits – The Sun Records Years” (Charly Records, 2017)

Ho hum. Another Cash (in) collection I hear you say. Well, yes, it is a compilation of songs that any self respecting fan will already have, probably several times over. However these 20 songs arrive encrypted in vinyl, shiny black vinyl, and when spun the sound is as vibrant as the yellow Sun Records label surrounding the spindle. Continue reading “Johnny Cash “Greatest Hits – The Sun Records Years” (Charly Records, 2017)”

Johnny Cash’s Unearthed will be released as a huge vinyl boxset

And some final news from Pitchfork before you break up for the weekend.  Have a good one dear readers. They report: “Johnny Cash’s 2003 box set Unearthed, a posthumous collection of previously unreleased recordings with Rick Rubin, will receive its first vinyl release this fall, as Rolling Stone points out. The lavish new set—which includes guest appearances from Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Nick Cave, Fiona Apple, Joe Strummer, and more—will span nine LPs. Continue reading “Johnny Cash’s Unearthed will be released as a huge vinyl boxset”

John Carter Cash takes the fight to white nationalists

And he won’t back down. Rolling Stone reports: “Earlier this week, NPR reported that American Recordings and Universal Music had sent a cease-and-desist letter to Stormfront Radio, the weekly radio show for the white supremacist site Stormfront, over its regular use of Johnny Cash’s cover of Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down.” At the time, Rosanne Cash, the singer-songwriter and daughter of Johnny, told Rolling Stone, “There aren’t ‘two sides,’ there are no ‘decent’ or ‘fine’ Nazis and we will not tolerate any such group using our dad’s work for their purposes.” Continue reading “John Carter Cash takes the fight to white nationalists”