The Johnny Cash Story
theSpace @ Symposium Hall – Garden Theatre
28th Aug, 2021
The sun was out for the final weekend of 2021’s Edinburgh Fringe. This year’s theatre festival was a long time coming series of events. At this venue, theSpace @ Symposium hall – Garden Theatre where ‘the Jonny Cash Story’ was to perform I was looking forward to it. The outdoor music space was a huge marquee with fresh air blowing through the crowd. I had passed it a few times already so I was glad to grab my chance of the experience, as part of the Night Owl Show production company.
We stepped onto the raised platform to take our seats, that had tables and bar service. As our Johnny Cash entrepreneur stepped up greeting us with some Cash style protest dialogue about the unfairness that he saw and took part in defeating. Kicking off the show was a one man vocal and acoustic filled with political defiance and peaceful protest.
Dressed all in black our Johnny had the style of Cash down to a T. His hair freshly oiled to recreate the famous song writer appeal. He was to start to really enjoy himself as front man and welcomed on his band; one electric, one acoustic, one bass and brush and sticks percussion and the famous lyric and vocal.
He joked with us, laughed a lot and had the voice down from loud to slow. It came alive with the Cash styled rock n’ roll/country which stirred the audience into action of their own. With resounding bass booming, rhythmic drumming just the Johnny Cash we know and love, very lively and very heart warming.
They listed their Garden gig as they went down with some less well known songs but hit the lights with classics that have gone down as the rock pop songs they were. The showman was always trying to get the audience moving and trying to involve them which came in stops and starts. As I looked round many people were still with stony faces but I think they were just enjoying the music.
The band came on leaps and bounds with the Johnny Cash power that made him so successful. Writing big songs like ‘Ring of Fire’ and ‘When the Man Comes Around’ were at such variants as to offer completely different worlds from just the one man. And in this spirit the sprightly singer grew in stature and after doing Cash’s deep throat American Accent changed events when saying ‘Aye, so I’m from Scotland’! So that’s why he was so likable.
So as the songs went by we clapped, whooped and would have fallen around if we weren’t seated. It picked us up with some pace and some grace. As the energy grew from the band reaching us in a rock n’ roll melt down. Tight as a band and as a Johnny Cash unit, we had lots of fun with our man Johnny Cash telling a story of the life of the man through music and in a short time.
With the black suit, to commemorate suffering, black songs and fun songs like the very funny ‘Boy Named Sue’, hinting at Mr Cash’s sense of humour after so many serious moments in his legendary life. Rock n’ Roll, so great a band and a relaxed and informative performer was pronounced very well at this tribute gig. Outside the fringe if you hear about them, take a mosey on down.