The Man in Black is back — in spirit, anyway.
In honor of the late country rock legend Johnny Cash’s would-be 80th birthday, the Bell House is throwing a massive bash hosted by honky tonk rockers Alex Battles and the Whisky Rebellion, complete with a sing-along of Cash’s greatest hits.
“Johnny Cash was never anybody except Johnny Cash,” said Battles. “There are so many artists who spend their lives imitating other artists, trying to figure out who they are, but Johnny Cash was always a straight-forward guy; he was strong and vulnerable, he was happy and sad — and he’s just the coolest guy.”
Battles and the Whisky Rebellion will croon Cash’s iconic San Quentin set, during which he serenaded the inmates at one of the country’s most notorious maximum-security prisons, placing a special emphasis on authenticity; Battles’s deep and gritty voice (and a couple of stiff drinks) makes this reenactment a faithful interpretation of the genuine article, even though he and Cash look nothing alike.
“Cash’s songs are real fun to sing along to,” Battles said. “My dad had a Johnny Cash tape that we listened to in the car, and he would play it over and over again until I learned all the songs by heart. That’s the reason I can do this, because the songs you grew up listening to are the songs you can do better than any other.”
But it’s not about Battles’s own love for the Man in Black, it’s about unifying Cash’s fans, and paying homage to a legend.
“This is not my event,” said Battles. “It’s for everybody who loves Johnny Cash.”
The Bell House [149 Seventh St. between Second and Third avenues in Gowanus, (718) 643-6510] Feb. 24, 8 pm. $20 ($15 in advance). For info, visit www.thebel
©2012 Community News Group
By submitting this comment, you agree to the following terms:
You agree that you, and not BrooklynPaper.com or its affiliates, are fully responsible for the content that you post. You agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, hateful, threatening or sexually-oriented material or any material that may violate applicable law; doing so may lead to the removal of your post and to your being permanently banned from posting to the site. You grant to BrooklynPaper.com the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual and fully sublicensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part world-wide and to incorporate it in other works in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.