Originally Published: July 26, 2018 8:37 p.m.
Lonely Street Productions is bringing an all new Johnny Cash show to the Elks Theatre and Performing Arts Center this weekend.
It debuted last fall and is already at the top of the request list, said performer Robert Shaw. While there was already the “Man in Black” show, this “I’ve Been Everywhere: The Johnny Cash Roadshow Experience” explores many facets of Cash’s career, Shaw said. He likened it to how Lonely Street has a variety of Elvis Presley shows from his Gospel work to the 1968 Comeback Special.
“Johnny Cash was just as prolific as Elvis, also as a songwriter not just a performer,” Shaw said. “So we thought it would be cool to explore some of those different sides of Johnny Cash.”
The show starts at 7 p.m. Friday, July 27. Tickets are $25 for adults, $22 for seniors and $30 for opera box seats and can be purchased online, by calling 928-777-1370 or at the door one hour prior to the performance.
A lot of the show was based on what the audience said they’d like to hear, Shaw said. It’s modeled after Cash’s television show and touring band, he said. It features the big hits and gives the audience what they’ve been asking for over the years.
While it’s not inaccurate to call Cash a country artist, because that’s his home turf, it’s difficult to nail him down to a specific genre, Shaw said.
“He was an amazing folk singer, he was an amazing rockabilly artist,” he said. “He would take songs that you knew and turn them on their ear. He’s hard to confine to one genre specifically.”
The show may be broader in scope, but it gives weight to the gravitas that someone like Cash deserves, Shaw said. It also includes some female backup singers for a Gospel portion and Alex Mack while the show puts a bit of a spotlight on Carl Perkins.
There’s even some of Cash’s modern music, such as his cover of Nine Inch Nails’ “Hurt,” which Shaw said is his favorite to perform in this show. It’s moving and powerful, he said.
“It’s very neat to bring that song to life and capture the power. It’s just so haunting,” Shaw said. “It’s very simple, the arrangement’s simple, but there’s just so much going on too.”
The Elks Theatre and Performing Arts Center is located at 117 E. Gurley St.