Friday, February 26, 2010

Johnny Cash "Bitter Tears: Ballads of the American Indian" (1964)

In honor of SXSW steadily approaching, I am posting this because A.) Its a great album with a great back story. B.) There is a great book about the subject being promoted right now and C.) I will be participating this year by performing pieces from this record with the author and many special guests.

To begin with, in 1962 Johnny Cash began dipping his feet in the civil rights pool emerging at the time, more specifically the American Indian Movement. Upon completion of this record in 1964, Columbia records decided not to release it due to its political content and this when Cash was riding the wave of success off of "Ring of Fire." Today the album is available on digital format but the demand from Cash fans for its "proper release" grows daily. I would suggest to go here for a well scripted historical account.

The book, "A Heartbeat and A Guitar" by Antonino D'Ambrosio, is critically acclaimed and a must read for both Cash fans and civil rights advocates. We will be performing works from "Bitter Tears" while the author reads passages from his book. My good friend and music boss, Martin Perna will be in the house along with Wayne Kramer of legendary proto-punk institution MC5 plus some "surprise guests" and giving the fact that guests in the past have been Chuck D, Billy Bragg, and Tom Morello, there's no telling who's going to show up. Dates are below.

3/18 - 6-9 @ Rabbit's Lounge - Austin, Tx.
3/19 - 6:30-8:30 @ Resistencia Bookstore - Austin, Tx. 

The album is here.

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