Sunday, November 12, 2006

New Johnny Cash Video

I doubt that there will be a release this year that brings out more emotion in me than Johnny Cash's 'American V: A Hundred Highways'. Featuring some of his last recordings before his death, you can notice a change in his voice. It sounds weaker, but not in a negative way and it's like he's having trouble breathing. Because of this, these songs sound so pure and so vulnerable that goosebumps take over my skin and a lump settles itself in my throat. This is not an album I play often, but it gets me everytime.

The first video from the album has just been released and it features no less than 36 cameos, including Iggy Pop, Bono, Jay Z, Keith Richards and Johnny Depp. I'm surprised to find out that one of the creators of this video is...Justin Timberlake (the others being Rick Rubin, Tony Kaye and director of the beautiful 'Hurt' video: Mark Romanek). Timberlake: working on his street credibility or an honest fan? With posthumous releases, there will always be the question whether it does the deceased justice. In this case you could question whether some artists in this video deserve to be associated with "the man in black". I'm not outspoken on this matter, because I don't think Johnny would mind. It's not a bad video either, though not half as good as the 'Hurt' video. Watch the video for 'God's gonna cut you down' below and decide for yourself.

I could talk about Johnny Cash some more, but I think it's better to finish this post with some recommendations for the people that like to find out more about this legend. The movie 'Walk the Line' was ok, but the documentary 'Johnny Cash - The Last Great American' gives a better picture of his life as a whole and it's done wonderfully. Realistically and respectfully done, with touching interviews with family members, friends and artists who worked with him, you will have a hard time keeping it dry in the end. Furthermore, his autobiography Cash is a terrific read!

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