Johnny Cash - Johnny Cash At Madison Square Garden

Published Tuesday 1st November 2005
Johnny Cash - Johnny Cash At Madison Square Garden

STYLE: Country
RATING 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9
LABEL: Columbia/Legacy 5094102
RRP: £13.99

Reviewed by Stuart Blackburn

In December 1969 Johnny Cash was enjoying widespread popularity with successes in the charts and on television. This recording, not released until 2002, represents a golden era in the career of the legend. Within is captured the many passions of the man: his Arkansas upbringing ("Five Feet High And Rising"); his sense of social justice ("The Ballad Of Ira Hayes"); his revulsion of war ("Last Night I Had The Strangest Dream") and his Christian faith ("Jesus Was A Carpenter"). Recorded in a day when it was okay for a song to last two minutes, there is a feeling here that Cash is showcasing his material. Then, right at the end of his first set, "Folsom Prison Blues" stirs something deep to confirm that this is not just entertainment. The interlude that follows includes guest appearances from Carl Perkins, the Statler Brothers and the Carter Family. June is missing, heavily pregnant at home with John Carter. Cash returns with a more impassioned second set that includes a diversity of material: "A Boy Named Sue", "Cocaine Blues", "He Turned The Water Into Wine" and others. His guests are invited back for a finale medley and "Suppertime" concludes the evening. The Tennessee Three oblige with hallmark precision and Columbia have cleaned up to the highest standards for 21st century ears. What makes this all the more compelling are Cash's comments between the songs. He is a humble man who honours his father and credits those who have written songs for him. He also comments on his childhood, prison and the Vietnam War. There is much here for both fans and enquirers.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

Interested in reviewing music? Find out more here.

Be the first to comment on this article

We welcome your opinions but libellous and abusive comments are not allowed.

We are committed to protecting your privacy. By clicking 'Send comment' you consent to Cross Rhythms storing and processing your personal data. For more information about how we care for your data please see our privacy policy.


Connect with Cross Rhythms by signing up to our email mailing list

Press Forward, Now!
Cross Rhythms Media Training Centre
Artists & DJs A-Z
# A B C D E F G H I J K L M
N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z #
Or keyword search


Watering Hole
Be heard in your pain and needs and cry out to your God in our Prayer Room