The legend running through his early hits

A new DVD release captures Johnny Cash at his peak.

Unfortunately it’s not this DVD and not this Johnny Cash. Walk The Line shows Joaquin Phoenix playing The Man in Black during his tumultuous early years, but Cash In Ireland, from 1993, shows the legend running through his early hits, one year before he was to be reinvigorated by producer Rick Rubin.

It seems incredible that the man who brought such intensity to his version of ‘The Mercy Seat’ is happy to sing such crowd-pleasing schmaltz as ‘Forty Shades Of Green’. Cash’s band, whose playing is impeccable, are joined on stage by Kris Kristofferson and The Carter Family, featuring Cash’s wife June. Stand-out track is a duet with Kristofferson on ‘Long Black Veil’. Maybe you shouldn’t mix families and rock ‘n’ roll. At the end of ‘Jackson’ Johnny and June kiss, with their guitarist son John looking uncomfortable behind them.

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