Johnny Cash: American V - July 4

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BlueChair
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Johnny Cash: American V - July 4

Postby BlueChair » Mon May 01, 2006 12:31 pm

LOS ANGELES, CA -- MONDAY, May 1, 2006 -- In the months leading up to his passing on
September 12, 2003, JOHNNY CASH had been recording new material with producer Rick
Rubin. On July 4, 2006, "American V: A Hundred Highways," the all-new Johnny Cash
album taken from those sessions, will be released on the American Recordings label
through Lost Highway. It will include the last song Cash ever wrote.

The songs that comprise "American V: A Hundred Highways" are as eclectic an
assortment as any on the previous albums in the American series: "Help Me," a
poignant plea to God, the hauntingly beautiful ballad "If You Could Read My Mind,"
"God's Gonna Cut You Down," a traditional spiritual, the touching "Love's Been Good
To Me," the heartrending "On The Evening Train," and "Further On (Up the Road)" are
among the tracks on the new album. Songwriters for the tracks run the gamut from
Hank Williams to Rod McKuen to Bruce Springsteen.

In addition, two original Cash compositions are featured, "Like the 309" and "I Came
to Believe." "Like the 309" is the last song Cash wrote and, like his first
recorded single, 1955's "Hey Porter," is a song that incorporates one of his
favorite settings, trains: "Everybody take a look/See I'm doin' fine/Then load my
box/On the 309." "I Came to Believe" is a song he wrote and originally recorded
earlier in his career, and addresses the pain of addiction and connecting to a
higher power.

"I think that 'American V' may be my favorite of all of the albums in the American
series," said Rubin. "It's different from the others, it has a much different
character. I think that this is as strong an album as Johnny ever made."

The months following the May, 2004 passing of his wife June Carter Cash, were among
the most physically and emotionally painful times in Cash's life, but keeping
focused on the recording of "American V: A Hundred Highways" proved to be his
salvation. Rubin remembers, "Johnny said that recording was his main reason for
being alive, and I think it was the only thing that kept him going, the only thing
he had to look forward to."

Cash and Rubin began recording the songs that would find their way onto "American V:
A Hundred Highways" in 2002, specifically on the day after they finished "American
IV: The Man Comes Around" which was released that November. Johnny feared that
"American IV" might be his last release, so Rubin suggested that he immediately
begin writing and recording new material. Over the next eight months, songs were
cut at Rubin's Los Angeles studio and in Nashville at Johnny's main home and at his
fabled cabin located across the road. Due to Cash's frail health, Rubin arranged
for an engineer and guitar players to always be on call for the days that Cash felt
strong enough to work.

"He always wanted to work," said Rubin. "Every morning when he'd wake up, he would
call the engineer and tell him if he was physically up to working that day. Our
main concern was to get a great vocal performance. Johnny would record a song, send
it to me and I would build a new track up under it. In the past, at the end of this
process, he'd come to L.A. And we'd go through everything together, he would
re-record any vocal bits that needed re-recording. But this time, we didn't have
that opportunity."

Last year, Rubin began going through these final recordings. He admitted, "I kind
of dreaded doing it, after Johnny passed, going back and listening to it...it was
difficult.

"With all of the albums Johnny and I made together, our goal was for each one to be
the best it could possibly be, and that remained the case with 'American V,'" Rick
explained. Eventually, Cash's long-time engineer David "Fergie" Ferguson,
Heartbreakers Mike Campbell (guitars) and Benmont Tench (keyboards), and Smokey
Hormel (guitars), all of whom had worked on previous albums in the American series,
along with Matt Sweeney (guitars) and Johnny Polonsky (guitars) went into the
studio.

"We felt Johnny's presence during the whole process through to the end," said Rubin.
"It felt like he was directing the proceedings, and I know that the musicians all
felt that as well. Almost all of the songs were cut solely to Johnny's original
vocal tracks, the musicians all keyed off his voice and were playing to him,
supporting the emotion of his performance. More than once, Fergie and I would look
at each other and say 'Johnny would love this,' because it was so good and so
different from anything we'd done before, we knew he would be excited by what was
happening."

It was decided to wait to release "American V: A Hundred Highways" until the recent
Cash hubbub had run its course. What separates this album from the re-packages,
compilations, movie soundtracks and everything else that has surfaced since Johnny's
passing is, according to Rubin, "These songs are Johnny's final statement. They are
the truest reflection of the music that was central to his life at the time. This
is the music that Johnny wanted us to hear."
This morning you've got time for a hot, home-cooked breakfast! Delicious and piping hot in only 3 microwave minutes.

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Postby BlueChair » Mon May 01, 2006 9:08 pm

Cash's Final Song To Appear On 'American V'

Johnny Cash


May 01, 2006, 4:15 PM ET

Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.
"Like the 309," the last song written by Johnny Cash before his death, will be included on "American V: A Hundred Highways." Due July 4 via American Recordings/Lost Highway, the album was recorded with producer Rick Rubin in the months leading up to Cash's September 2003 passing.

"These songs are Johnny's final statement," Rubin says. "They are the truest reflection of the music that was central to his life at the time. This is the music that Johnny wanted us to hear."

A song utilizing one of Cash's favorite subjects, trains, "Like the 309" is one of two original songs on the disc. The other, "I Came to Believe," was written and recorded earlier in his career about addiction and salvation through a higher power.

The balance of the set includes such songs as Bruce Springsteen's "Further On (Up the Road)," Gordon Lightfoot's "If You Could Read My Mind," Hank Williams' "On the Evening Train," Rod McKuen's "Love's Been Good To Me" and the traditional spiritual "God's Gonna Cut You Down."

"I think that 'American V' may be my favorite of all of the albums in the American series," Rubin says. "It's different from the others, it has a much different character. I think that this is as strong an album as Johnny ever made."

Beginning with 1994's "American Recordings," the series of stripped down recordings brought Cash to a new audience and sparked interest in the country legend's career. The four albums have sold 2.6 million copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan. "American IV: The Man Comes Around" has been the best received, with more than 1.5 million copies sold. The 2002 disc, which featured a popular cover of Nine Inch Nails' "Hurt," peaked at No. 22 on The Billboard 200 and No. 2 on the Top Country Albums chart after Cash's death.

Cash began work on "American IV" the day after completing "American IV," according to Rubin, using the process to help him navigate the period after his wife June Carter-Cash's May 2003 death.

"Johnny said that recording was his main reason for being alive," Rubin says. "And I think it was the only thing that kept him going, the only thing he had to look forward to."

With Cash's engineer David "Fergie" Ferguson, the songs were completed by a group of musicians who had worked on previous "American" recordings: Heartbreakers guitarist Mike Campbell and keyboardist Benmont Tench and guitarist Smokey Hormel (Beck, Tom Waits), along with guitarists Matt Sweeney (Guided By Voices, Chavez) and Jonny Polonsky.

"We felt Johnny's presence during the whole process through to the end," Rubin adds. "It felt like he was directing the proceedings, and I know that the musicians all felt that as well... More than once, Fergie and I would look at each other and say 'Johnny would love this,' because it was so good and so different from anything we'd done before, we knew he would be excited by what was happening."

As previously reported, a trove of sparse solo recordings Cash made in the 1970s will be released May 23 via Columbia/Legacy under the heading "Personal File."
This morning you've got time for a hot, home-cooked breakfast! Delicious and piping hot in only 3 microwave minutes.

charliestumpy
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Cash V

Postby charliestumpy » Thu May 04, 2006 3:22 am

Ta for tip, as I would almost certainly not have known as I gave up checking JC sites a coupla months ago.

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Postby BlueChair » Thu Jun 15, 2006 1:28 pm

Two of the new Johnny Cash songs can be heard here:
http://www.myspace.com/johnnycash
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noiseradio
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Postby noiseradio » Thu Jun 15, 2006 7:33 pm

Awesome. Thanks for the info.
"There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy."
--William Shakespeare

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Postby BlueChair » Tue Jul 04, 2006 10:13 am

bump

this is in stores today
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Postby Bad Ambassador » Tue Jul 04, 2006 3:58 pm

And it is quiet beautiful. His version of 'If You Could Read My Mind' is stunning.

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Postby El Vez » Tue Jul 04, 2006 4:00 pm

I went in to Target on my lunch hour to get it and, unfortunately, their delivery system was totally screwed up because of the holiday. It was pretty much the only place in town that was open and likely to have it....I won't go in to Wal Mart even for The Man In Black. Sigh, guess I'll have to wait till tomorrow.

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Postby ice nine » Wed Jul 05, 2006 10:27 pm

You must be a union man, El Vez. Good for you.
It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think that you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt
- M. Twain

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Postby Who Shot Sam? » Wed Jul 05, 2006 10:31 pm

You don't need to be a union man to hate Wal-Mart!
Mother, Moose-Hunter, Maverick

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Postby pophead2k » Thu Jul 06, 2006 6:16 am

I was a fairly avid Wal Mart hater until Hurricane Katrina. Wal Mart mobilized food, water, and clothing support for thousands of Gulf Coast and New Orleans residents far quicker than the governments of those respective areas did. They also opened their stores for emergency responders to take anything they needed, and not just stores that were in 'loot' zones, but all over. In addition, WalMart gave in excess of $20 million to other charities such as the Red Cross and Habitat for Humanity. You could look at it cynically as just a PR move or a tax write-off, but the bottom line is they truly helped people (like me) in a time of dire need when no one else was able or willing to help. I've changed my tune completely re: Wal Mart.

PS: Didn't mean to hijack a thread by one of my favorite artists! I will be buying this disc this week, but probably not at Wal Mart. I also love to support my local independent music dealer at Off Beat Music in Durham.

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Postby BlueChair » Fri Jul 07, 2006 7:46 am

Beautiful album... Johnny's reading of Gordon Lightfoot's "If You Could Read My Mind" is heartbreaking.
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Postby BlueChair » Wed Jul 12, 2006 10:25 am

Cash Earns First No. 1 Album Since 1969

Johnny Cash


July 12, 2006, 10:45 AM ET

Katie Hasty, N.Y.
Even in death, Johnny Cash is still mighty enough to top The Billboard 200. "American V: A Hundred Highways" earns the Man in Black his first No. 1 album since 1969's "Johnny Cash at San Quentin" with 88,000 copies sold in the United States, according to Nielsen Soundscan.

The American Recordings/Lost Highway effort also crowns the Top Country Albums tally, knocking the Dixie Chicks' "Taking the Long Way" (Columbia) to No. 2 after seven weeks on top.

Though the top debut is a great posthumous achievement, the Rick Rubin-produced "American V" sold the fewest copies of a No. 1 debut since Nielsen SoundScan began tracking data in 1991. The previous low for a No. 1 debut belonged to Destiny's Child's "#1's" in 2005, which started with 113,000.

Nelly Furtado's "Loose" (Mosley Music/Geffen) climbs 3-2 on The Billboard 200 with 81,000 copies, despite a 18% slip in sales. After scoring her first No. 1 last week, India.Arie's Universal Motown release "Testimony: Vol. 1, Life & Relationship" falls to No. 3 with 69,000 copies after a 57% sales hit. The Chicks' "Taking the Long Way" holds tight at No. 4 with 57,000 (-27%).

Gnarls Barkley's "St. Elsewhere" (Downtown/Atlantic) continues a gradual ascent to a new peak position, moving 6-5, with 56,000 (-6%). Switching places with the effort is Rihanna's SRP/Def Jam album "A Girl Like Me," shifting 5-6 with an 11% sales slip to 55,000. Rascal Flatts' Lyric Street album "Me and My Gang" sells just a small percentage fewer, keeping the No. 7 spot warm (55,000; 6%).

The soundtrack to Disney's "High School Musical" continues to sell strongly in its 26th week on the chart, moving down 8-9 with 52,000 (-10%). Dashboard Confessional's "Dusk and Summer" (Vagrant) falls to No. 9 after debuting at No. 2 last week, with 50,000 units and a 63% sales dropoff.

Rise Against lands its best sales week and chart position ever with the Geffen album "The Sufferer & the Witness," which debuts at No. 10 with 48,000. The group's last release, "Siren Song of the Counter Culture," debuted and peaked at No. 136 in 2004.

In a slow week for new releases during the July 4 holiday, only two other albums debuted in the top 200: the soundtrack to Disney's "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest" at No. 24 (30,000) and the Diana Reyes hits collection "Las No. 1 De La Reyes" (No. 143, 6,000).

At 9 million units, overall CD sales were down 6% from the previous week and down a whopping 15% compared to the same week a year ago. Sales for 2006 are down 5% compared to 2005 at 179.6 million units.
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