Posts Tagged ‘Johnny Cash’

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Although it might seem that they came from, and lived in, two very different worlds, Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash had plenty in common. They were, of course, both fiercely independent songwriters with instantly identifiable vocal styles. They ignored trends and conventions in favor of creating new ones. They both created memorable characters and told stories that stayed with you forever. They were admired by millions and influenced countless other artists.

Not surprisingly, they were fans of one another’s work. Dylan knew of Cash before the Man in Black knew of him. After Cash’s death Dylan recalled hearing “I Walk the Line” for the first time. “It was different than anything else you had ever heard. The record sounded like a voice from the middle of the Earth. It was so powerful and moving,” he said.

Cash wrote in his autobiography that he was obsessed with the album “The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan” and once wrote the younger singer a fan letter. They met for the first time at the 1964 Newport Folk Festival and struck up a friendship. Five years later, the inevitable: they made music together. On February 17th and 18th, 1969, the pair recorded more than a dozen songs in Nashville. One, “Girl From the North Country,” was issued on Dylan’s “Nashville Skyline” album, released on April 9th. The other tracks found their way to bootlegs.

Several weeks later, on May 1st, 1969, Cash was at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium taping what would become the first episode of The Johnny Cash Show. One of his guests was Dylan. The visitor first performed two solo numbers before Cash joined him for a rendition of “Girl From the North Country.”

The program aired on June 7th, with the still largely unknown Joni Mitchell one of the other guests.

The Johnny Cash Show aired for nearly two years, 32 episodes in all. Other guests included Linda Ronstadt, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Glen Campbell, Merle Haggard, Lulu, the Monkees, Arlo Guthrie, Ray Charles, Neil Diamond, the Guess Who, Eric Clapton, Cass Elliot, the Everly Brothers, Eric Andersen, Dusty Springfield, Jerry Lee Lewis, Tony Joe White, Judy Collins, Rick Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison and Gordon Lightfoot.


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Sony’s Legacy Recordings continues the long running Bob Dylan ‘Bootleg Series’ as they announce “Travelin’ Thru 1967-1969: The Bootleg Series vol 15” which revisits Dylan’s musical journeys to Nashville from 1967-1969, focusing on previously unavailable recordings session made with Johnny Cash and unreleased tracks from the John Wesley Harding, Nashville Skyline, and Self Portrait sessions.

Travelin’ Thru is simpler and more affordable than previous sets as it comes as a three disc package for both CD and vinyl.

Disc one of this set offers alternate versions of tracks from John Wesley Harding”the album Dylan recorded as a trio (himself, Charlie McCoy on bass and Kenneth Buttrey on drums) in late 1967 after his infamous motorcycle accident of the previous year. Amongst the unreleased material is a different version of All Along The Watch TowerNashville Skyline sessions offer an alternate of ‘Lay Lady Lay’ and a new song ‘Western Road’.

Discs two and three are centred around Dylan’s work with Johnny Cash, including Columbia Studio A sessions and on-stage performances at the Ryman Auditorium (May 1st, 1969) for the recording of the premiere episode of The Johnny Cash Show (originally broadcast on ABC-TV on June 7, 1969).

Disc Three features Self Portrait outtakes, including ‘Ring of Fire’ and ‘Folsom Prison Blues’ (recorded with guitarist Fred Carter two days after the Johnny Cash Show on 3 May) and closes with tracks recorded on 17th May 1970 with bluegrass banjo legend Earl Scruggs for the PBS television special, Earl Scruggs: His Family and Friends” (originally aired January 1971).

‘John Wesley Harding’ is still among my top two or three best Dylan albums. The album is so rich with imagery that each song feels like a little screenplay. This just might be the release that leads me to re-evaluate ‘Nashville Skyline’, I feel drawn to Dylan’s music during all its ‘phases’ I think that the whole Bootleg series has done more to elucidate Dylan’s genius than most of the original releases in their original form and time. When you consider albums like ‘Highway 61 Revisited’, ‘Blonde on Blonde’ or ‘Blood on The Tracks’, that says a lot about what he’s contributed and what’s still to be heard.

Travelin’ Thru 1967-1969: The Bootleg Series vol 15 will be released on 1st November 2019.

Image result for BOB DYLAN and JOHNNY CASH - " The Dylan/Cash Sessions "

Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash had been circling each other for the better part of a decade before finally joining forces in the studio. The Man In Black had made the first move, writing the young troubadour a fan letter shortly after Dylan came on the scene in 1962. When they met in person at the Newport Folk Festival two years later, he gave Dylan one of his guitars as a sign of respect.

In February 1969, Dylan was in Cash’s hometown recording his ninth album, the country-imbued “Nashville Skyline”. By chance, Johnny Cash happened to be working in the studio next door. Dylan paid him a visit, and on February 17th and 18th, the pair recorded more than a dozen duets together. Of the bunch, only one of them – an update of the Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan track “Girl From the North Country” – made the finished album. The rest would languish in the tape vaults until being liberated by enterprising bootleggers.

The collection is a fascinating study of two musical heavyweights revisiting their respective legacies. Dylan’s “One Too Many Mornings” is given a run-through, as are Cash’s hits “I Walk the Line,” “Ring of Fire” and “Big River.” Early Sun Records tracks like “That’s All Right” and “Matchbox” are also dusted off, with Carl Perkins himself backing the men on guitar.  Judged as a loose, informal meeting of two giants, it’s very pleasurable listening, though more for Cash’s contributions than Dylan’s. With full band backing (including Carl Perkins on electric guitar), the pair run through easygoing, rockabilly-tinged versions of Dylan songs, Cash songs, old Sun rockabilly chestnuts

“Of course, I knew of him before he ever heard of me,” Dylan wrote shortly after Cash’s death in 2003. “In ’55 or ’56, ‘I Walk the Line’ played all summer on the radio, and it was different than anything else you had ever heard. The record sounded like a voice from the middle of the Earth. It was so powerful and moving.”

A few weeks after the release of Nashville Skyline, Dylan and Cash performed “Girl From the North Country” on The Johnny Cash Television Show. It was taped on May 1st, 1969 at the Ryman Auditorium in downtown Nashville. A rough video clip (around the 30 minute mark) captures the moment. Despite Dylan’s reported nervousness, the performance was well-received. “I didn’t feel anything about it,” Cash said later. “But everybody said it was the most magnetic, powerful thing they ever heard in their life. They were just raving about electricity and magnetism. And all I did was just sit there hitting G chords.”


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Released 50 years ago, it surely is one of his most controversial albums.. “Embracing” classic Country music & kicking off the “Country Rock” genre. I’ve always liked this album… It’s not a masterpiece, but a solid Dylan album.
Recorded February 12th–21th, 1969 Nashville Skyline was the ninth studio album by American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan, released in April 1969 by Columbia Records.

Dylan looks inscrutable, or at least aloof, on many of his album covers. So it’s disarming to see him with a big grin, mid-tip of the hat, on the front of Nashville Skyline. As much as we’re looking at him, he seems to be looking back at us, and there’s a warmth to his gaze that feels all the more affecting coming from the trailblazer who once sneered, “How does it feeeel?”

He’s worn many hats throughout his career—rock star, folk crooner, musical intellectual and political troubadour—and 50 years ago, he unexpectedly added country singer to that list. Dylan released Nashville Skyline, one of the most noteworthy style deviations in his discography, it ranks high among the best albums of that year. It features the suggestive hit “Lay, Lady, Lay,” Bob Dylan’s finest drawl and a reworked version of his 1963 tune “Girl From The North Country” featuring the country king himself, Johnny Cash.

Building on the rustic style he experimented with on John Wesley Harding, “Nashville Skyline” displayed a complete immersion into country music. Along with the more basic lyrical themes, simple songwriting structures, and charming domestic feel, it introduced audiences to a radically new singing voice from Dylan—a soft, affected country croon. At the time, the album was viewed as yet another new direction for Dylan, whose previous album had been the spare, rustic, lyrically opaque, acoustic guitar-based John Wesley Harding(1967); itself a departure from the mostly electric sound of Highway 61 Revisited (1965) and Blonde on Blonde (1966). Both Blonde on BlondeandJohn Wesley Harding were recorded in Nashville, the latter using three local musicians exclusively, but when he returned to Nashville in February 1969 to record Nashville Skyline(released in April ’69), he embraced country music more than he ever had before—penning simpler, more straightforward lyrics, doing a deeper dive into country instrumentation as accompaniment, and also singing with a much warmer, sweeter tone than he had shown before,

The first track on the album was a retooling of a tune Dylan originally wrote and recorded in 1963 for The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan (his second album), called “Girl from the North Country.” On Nashville Skyline it was sung as a duet with Johnny Cash, which might sound like an unusual pairing, but the two had actually been friends dating back a few years when both lived in Woodstock, New York. Cash even wrote an evocative liner notes poem for the Nashville Skyline.

When Johnny Cash began his three-year run as host of a popular—and excellent!—summer TV series, The Johnny Cash Show, which was shot at Nashville’s famed Ryman Auditorium and each week featured various country and country-leaning artists. Dylan, who had barely been seen in public since early 1966, agreed to appear on the June 7th episode of Cash’s show, and they sang this version of “Girl from the North Country,” no doubt baffling some of his old fans, while introducing himself to many, many new ones.

Watch Dylan perform the song “Girl From The North Country” live in Oakland, Calif., in 1988

Kris Kristofferson played an important (albeit uncredited) role in the recording of “Lay Lady Lay.” The song’s distinctive percussion features a pair of bongos and a cowbell during the verses, and Kristofferson — then working as a janitor at Columbia Recording Studios — was asked to hold these instruments for percussionist Kenny Buttrey, allowing him to play the drum parts during the chorus. Buttrey moved the drum microphone directly over Kristofferson so it could pick up these sounds more clearly, which had the added effect of making his drumming sound fainter. The first take wound up becoming the master take, and Buttrey would later call it one of his favourite performances.

The result received a generally positive reaction from critics, and was a commercial success. Reaching number 3 in the US, the album also scored Bob Dylan his fourth UK number 1 album.

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“Lay Lady Lay” turned out to be one of Dylan’s biggest pop hits, reaching #7 in the US, and giving him his biggest single in three years. “Lay Lady Lay” was originally written for the film Midnight Cowboy, but Dylan did not deliver it in time for it to be included in the score. He was initially reluctant to authorize the single’s release, but eventually approved at the insistence of Columbia president Clive Davis.

In the end, Nashville Skyline is a lovely album but not a heavyweight contender, though its effects were major ones. Country music was despised, hick music when Dylan took it up. People were divided into the hip and the non-hip. The counterculture was in full swing and riddled with its own self-importance and snobbery. Nashville Skyline was a hard pill to swallow: but it did ’em good. Nashville Skyline was a full-fledged country album, complete with steel guitars and brief, direct songs. It’s a warm, friendly album, particularly since Bob Dylan is singing in a previously unheard gentle croon — the sound of his voice is so different it may be disarming upon first listen, but it suits the songs.

So here he is, folks, Homebody Bob, singin’ ten songs for your listenin’ pleasure — well, nine, actually one is a hoedown sort o’ thing. Everyone knows by now, I hope, how intense that pleasure is. But hasn’t anyone noticed something odd? ….. but no one mentioned that by the mere trick of changing his entire vocal style, Dylan had crossed us up again, that “Nashville Skyline” was a bigger switcheroo than “John Wesley Harding.” It is touching that everyone wants to believe Bobby has settled down, but don’t bet on it. All those protestations of easy innocence may be just one more shuck.

Legacy Recordings Announces Eclectic Assortment Of Collectible 7″, 12″ Vinyl and Cassette Titles For Record Store Day 2018

Legacy Recordings, the catalog arm of Sony Music, has announced the titles its releasing for this year’s Record Store Day, which will take place on April 21st 2018.

A press release notes that it’s the most number of albums the label has issued in the 11 years that Record Store Day has taken place. Among this year’s offerings are limited-edition releases by such artists as AC/DC, Pink Floyd and Bruce Springsteen.

Pink Floyd are reissuing their debut, The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, on mono vinyl for the first time in 50 years. Bruce Springsteen will see his 1995 Greatest Hits compilation issued on individually numbered red vinyl, while AC/DC’s Back in Black will be sold on cassette. The document of the 1987 tour by Bob Dylan and the Grateful Dead, Dylan & the Dead, will be sold on red and blue tie-dye vinyl.

Legacy Recordings also revealed that the Allman Brothers Band’s Live at the Atlanta Pop Festival, July 3 & 5, 1970, one of their most famous concerts prior to their At Fillmore East breakthrough, will be available for the first time on vinyl, with four discs housed in a box set with eight pages of notes and photos. A similar treatment has been given to Jeff Buckley’s Live at Sin-é: Legacy Edition.

Johnny Cash’s legendary At Folsom Prison is coming out in a special five-LP collection that combines the entirety of both sets Cash performed that day, as well as performances by June Carter, Carl Perkins and the Statler Brothers. Included in the package is a 12″ single of rehearsals the band ran through at a Sacramento, Calif., hotel the night before the shows and an eight-page 12″ x 12″ booklet.

Live sets by Living Colour (Live at CBGB’s, 12.19.89), Rage Against the Machine (Democratic National Convention 2000), Elvis Presley (The King in the Ring — the acoustic sets of his 1968 comeback special), Soul Asylum (Live From Liberty Lunch, Austin, TX, December 3, 1992), Hot Tuna (Live at the New Orleans House) and Big Audio Dynamite II(On the Road Live ’92) will also receive their premiere vinyl release.

Legacy is also putting out a pair of 7″ singles for Record Store Day: Jimi Hendrix’s “Mannish Boy” b/w “Trash Man,” both of which come from April 1969 sessions, and a collaboration between Van Morrison and jazz organist Joey DeFrancesco on “Close Enough for Jazz” and “The Things I Used to Do.”

In addition, records by Eurythmics (the 1984 soundtrack), Kenny Loggins (purple vinyl of Return to Pooh Corner) and Uncle Tupelo (No Depression – Demos) will be released.

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The Allman Brothers BandLive At The Atlanta Pop Festival, July 3th & 5th, 1970 (4LP 12” vinyl – Individually Numbered – First Time on Vinyl)

The Allman Brothers Band was one of Georgia’s top live acts still looking for a national break when they were hired to open the three-day Atlanta International Pop Festival. The band’s Southern blues style, bolstered by jams that stretched to epic lengths, won over audiences—and two days later, after legends like Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Winter and B.B. King took the stage, the Allmans were invited back for a second set. Recorded nearly a year before At Fillmore East established them as one of America’s hottest bands, fans can now discover these landmark nights in Allman Brothers Band history with this individually numbered, limited edition box set, available on vinyl for the first time and packaged in an oversize slipcase with an eight-page booklet of photos and liner notes.

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Big Audio Dynamite II, On The Road Live ’92 (12” Single – First Time on Vinyl)

The Clash’s Mick Jones resurrected Big Audio Dynamite with a new lineup in the early 1990s, releasing The Globe, the band’s best-selling album in America, in 1991. This five-track EP, available for the first time on vinyl, features performances from live dates in Chicago and New York—including a rendition of the band’s U.K. No. 1 single, “Rush.”

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Jeff Buckley, Live At Sin-é: Legacy Edition (4LP 12” vinyl – Individually Numbered – First Time on Vinyl)

In a cramped club on the lower east side of Manhattan, armed with only an electric guitar, Jeff Buckley stunned audiences with his mysterious, emotionally uncompromising live sets, packed with eclectic covers and his own originals. The four-track Live At Sin-é EP, released in 1993, was his debut release for Columbia Records; here, it’s expanded as a numbered, limited edition in a deluxe hard shell slipcase housing four individually designed LP jackets and an eight-page, full-color booklet of photos and liner notes. Live versions of favorites like “Grace,” “Last Goodbye” and Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” appear here on vinyl for the first time.

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Johnny Cash, At Folsom Prison: Legacy Edition (5LP 12” vinyl – Individually Numbered – First Time on Vinyl)

“Hello…I’m Johnny Cash.” With those four words, The Man in Black solidified his legend as outlaw country pioneer with two spirited sets recorded at Folsom State Prison in 1968 and released as At Folsom Prison, one of the most acclaimed live albums of all time. This special box set includes both full concerts available for the first time on vinyl, including performances by June Carter, Carl Perkins and The Statler Brothers. This numbered deluxe package, featuring individually designed LP jackets packaged in a deluxe hard shell slipcase with an eight-page, 12” x 12” booklet, also includes a bonus 12” single featuring previously unreleased audio of Cash and friends rehearsing at the El Rancho Motel in Sacramento, California, the night before the concerts took place.

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Bob Dylan & The Grateful Dead, Dylan & The Dead (LP – Red and Blue Tie-Die Vinyl)

In 1987, two legends joined forces for an unforgettable tour. Now, Dylan & The Dead, featuring The Grateful Dead backing up Bob Dylan on seven of his classic songs, including “All Along The Watchtower,” “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” and “Gotta Serve Somebody,” is available on red and blue tie-dye vinyl for a trip unlike any other.

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Jimi Hendrix, Mannish Boy b/w Trash Man (7” Single)

Recorded at New York City’s Record Plant on April 22nd, 1969, this uptempo reworking of Muddy Waters’ “Mannish Boy” marks Jimi Hendrix’s first recording session with bassist Billy Cox and drummer Buddy Miles—the trio who became known as Band of Gypsys, whose work with Hendrix had a significant impact on his remarkable legacy. First released on Both Sides Of The Sky, a new studio album of rare and unissued Hendrix recordings, “Mannish Boy” is issued here as a 45 RPM single backed with “Trash Man,” an April 3, 1969 studio recording made by the original Jimi Hendrix Experience. “Trash Man” is drawn from Hear My Music, a Dagger Records “official bootleg” album not sold in stores and otherwise only available to fans via

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Van Morrison & Joey DeFrancesco, Close Enough for Jazz b/w The Things I Used to Do (7” Single)

This limited edition 7” single is a collaboration between legendary vocalist Van Morrison and jazz organist Joey DeFrancesco, featuring a new version of Morrison’s “Close Enough for Jazz” and a stunning rendition of Guitar Slim’s “The Things I Used to Do.”

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Pink Floyd, The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn (Mono) (LP)

The psychedelic debut album by Pink Floyd was their sole album completed with original vocalist/guitarist Syd Barrett and featured the early classic “Interstellar Overdrive.” The original mono version of Pink Floyd’s first LP, named one of Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, is available on vinyl for the first time in more than 50 years.

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Soul Asylum, Live From Liberty Lunch, Austin, TX, December 3, 1992 (2LP – Previously Unreleased – First Time on Vinyl)

Legacy Recordings’ Live From The Vaults series uncovers rare and unreleased concerts on vinyl, featuring classic bootleg-inspired jacket design with unique, artist-specific outer wraps (OBIs)! This never-before-heard set features Soul Asylum’s hard-driving performance at the legendary Austin venue Liberty Lunch, just months after the release of their breakthrough album Grave Dancers Union.

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Bruce Springsteen, Greatest Hits (2LP – Individually Numbered – Red Vinyl)

Originally released in 1995, Greatest Hits was the first collection of powerful hit singles from the first two decades of Bruce Springsteen’s career—and kicked off an exciting new chapter in his story with three brand-new songs recorded with The E Street Band after nearly a decade apart. Long unavailable on the vinyl format, this individually numbered 2LP set, pressed on red vinyl, is assembled from the brilliant remasters of Springsteen’s discography by Bob Ludwig.

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Uncle Tupelo, No Depression – Demos (LP – First Time on Vinyl)

Released in 1990, Uncle Tupelo’s debut album No Depression was a genuine milestone in American rock and roll, a striking fusion of traditional folk and country with post-punk innovation and hardcore ferocity. For the first time on vinyl, fans can hear Jeff Tweedy, Jay Farrar and Mike Heidorn’s legendary demo tape Not Forever, Just For Now, recorded in 1989, plus a demo of “No Depression” recorded a year prior.

For full details, visit Record Store Day’s website.

filmed brilliantly by the La Blogotheque Crew this mini documentary features some perfect covers of Johnny Cash songs