Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Mr. Cash, Fifteen Years Later

On June 21, 2003, I photographed Johnny Cash’s tribute show to June Carter Cash at the Carter Family Fold, in Hiltons, VA. This was a venue that Johnny and June loved, and would always play around her birthday in late June. When June passed away in May of 2003, I truly believed that I would never have the chance to see Mr. Cash in person. A month later, I found myself invited by the Carter family to photograph what became Mr. Cash final shows, including this tribute show to June.

You can watch video of the June 21st show online, but as you watch it, max out your emotions by twenty, and that’s what it was like to be in the room. It was emotionally weighted air. People overflowed the venue, sitting all the way up the Virginia mountainside, yet at times we all cried and exhaled at once. In retrospect, it was also the day that cemented photography in my life. It was now truly a part of my life that I could never let go of, much like that day. In the years since, several of the photos from that show have been seen all over the world, and used by the Cash and Carter families. This past Sunday, John Carter Cash, whom I first read about while reading a comic book when I was nine years old, used one of my photos of himself and his dad to wish everyone a Happy Father’s Day. And the story goes on.

So today, to mark the anniversary, I am on the road again, driving to Pennsylvania to photograph two of my favorite musicians, Mike Nesmith and Micky Dolenz, in the same venue where I first saw them live six years ago. If you’re there, say hello. Here’s to the circles within the lines of life, and the people and places that stay with us forever. See you there, and see you on the road.
June 21, 2018

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