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Recorded at Austin City Limits last April, We Walk the Line effectively lobbies for posthumous 80th birthday bashes. Brandi Carlile’s opening tear through “Folsom Prison Blues” convinces us she can at least imagine shooting “a man in Reno just to watch him die” and sets the bar high for the rest of the gang. Despite the crack combo — including Don Was, Ian McLagan, and Buddy Miller — backing nearly everyone, several fall short. Vanilla interpretations include Iron & Wine’s feckless “Long Black Veil” and Andy Grammer’s cutesy “Get Rhythm” (where’s Al Anderson when ya need him?).

Typically, an unwieldy full-ensemble attempt to “Walk the Line” fails the sobriety test.

Drawlers ‘n’ brawlers best realize Cash’s joie-de-raise hell, to wit: Buddy Miller’s traditional/contemporary cornpone marriage, “Hey Porter,” Rhett Miller’s rebel-yell-spiked “Wreck of the Old 97,” Ronnie Dunn’s schmaltz-and-tequila-drenched “Ring of Fire,” and Kris Kristofferson embodying an indigent rambler on “Big River.” Surprises include Amy Nelson/Shooter Jennings’s jubilant “Cocaine Blues,” Amy Lee’s sensuous immersion in “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry,” the Carolina Chocolate Drops’ banjo-and-attitude-driven “Jackson,” and Shelby Lynne/Pat Monahan’s raggedly romantic “It Ain’t Me Babe.”

The package includes a DVD of the show, with Willie Nelson providing the worthiest bonus performance.

Album: We Walk the Line: A Celebration of the Music of Johnny Cash
Artist: Various
Label: Sony Legacy
Songs: (1) Brandi Carlile, “Folsom Prison Blues” (2) Andy Grammer, “Get Rhythm” (3) Amy Lee, “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” (4) Buddy Miller, “Hey Porter” (5) Shelby Lynne, “Why Me Lord” (6) Pat Monahan, “Help Me Make It Through the Night” (7) Shelby Lynne/Pat Monahan, “It Ain’t Me Babe” (8) Jamey Johnson/Kris Kristofferson, “Sunday Morning Coming Down” (9) The Carolina Chocolate Drops, “Jackson” (10) Rhett Miller, “Wreck of the Old 97” (11) Ronnie Dunn, “Ring of Fire” (12) Shooter Jennings/Amy Nelson, “Cocaine Blues” (13) Lucinda Williams, “Hurt” (14) Iron & Wine, “Long Black Veil” (15) Kris Kristofferson, “Big River” (16) Sheryl Crow, “Cry, Cry, Cry” (17) Willie Nelson/Sheryl Crow, “If I Were a Carpenter” (18) Kristofferson/Nelson/Jennings/Johnson, “Highwayman” (19) Ensemble, “I Walk the Line”

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HarryG Aug. 16, 2012 @ 8:57 a.m.

There’s new Johnny Cash documentary on the internet called My Father and The Man In Black, has anyone else heard of it or seen it? It talks about a side of Johnny Cash’s story that many of us don’t know about. Anyway, the article above reminded me of the film, I thought it was pretty cool and I can’t wait to see it! Heres the link to the trailer: http://youtu.be/jtovAxxPo2Q


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