Johnny Cash tribute show coming to Sylvan Lake

David James and Big River’s Tribute to Johnny Cash will be at the Sylvan Lake Legion on Oct. 18

Photo Courtesy of johnnycashtribute.ca.

Photo Courtesy of johnnycashtribute.ca.

The “Man in Black” will be hitting the stage in Sylvan Lake later this month.

David James and Big River are putting on a Tribute to Johnny Cash at the Sylvan Lake Legion on Oct. 18.

On stage James performs under the persona of “Almost Johnny Cash” and begins every show by introducing himself as such.

“It always gets a laugh out of people,” said James in a phone interview. “I ain’t lying either because I’m not Johnny Cash, I’m almost Johnny Cash.”

The Alberta-native decided to form a tribute band when he was watching the movie “Walk the Line” and his girlfriend noticed he sounded exactly like Johnny Cash while singing along.

About a decade ago the band started playing pubs around Vancouver Island, where he lives, and has taken off.

“We’ve been pounding the heck out of western Canada for quite some time,” explained James. “We’ve been out east a few times and we’re heading into the States starting in November.”

The A Tribute to Johnny Cash show features all the hit songs alongside some story telling.

“Johnny was a pretty funny guy on stage and I’ve been known to be quite humorous myself,” added James.

During the set James tells stories about what he knew of Johnny, saying although he was never there he does relate to Johnny.

In the past James had abused drugs and alcohol and was turning his life around when he watched “Walk the Line” for the first time.

“That’s when I discovered him and watched his movie and went ‘good Lord, I feel kind of like this guy,” said James.

Between the similar life struggles and the sense of humour, James said adapted the “Almost Johnny Cash” persona on stage is sort of natural.

James says he has a few “key” stories that relate to certain songs, but every show is a little different.

“I do it kind of in the style Johnny would, which was from the hip as I like to call it, just kind of ‘OK let’s see what happens here, let’s try this story,’” James said. “You’re going to get a pile of cool stories, stuff you may or may not have known.”

The show goes through emotional songs like “Hurt” and “The Long Black Veil”, but also takes a gleeful ride with song-a-long songs like “Ring of Fire”, “Folsom Prison Blues” and “A Boy Named Sue”.

He added “Orange Blossom Special” is a standout in terms of showmanship.

“Johnny plays a couple of harps and of course I imitate what he did and then some,” said James, adding he has also got pretty good at the harmonica playing the same song for 10 years.

He says they get intimate with the crowd and the audience is “very much part of the show” because without them there is no show.

James continued saying the show will make you laugh, make you cry and take you back in time.

“More than once I’ve had a little old lady come up and go ‘sonny, you made me feel 16 again, thank you’… It’s pretty deep actually, it’s the best compliment you can get,” said James.

Tickets for a Tribute to Johnny Cash are $35 and are available for purchase, cash only, at the Sylvan Lake Legion.

Dinner tickets can be purchased separately for an additional $10.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m. on Oct. 18 followed by dinner at 6 p.m. The show will start at 7:30 p.m.

Remaining tickets will be available at the door, although the show is already over 50 per cent sold out.

For more information go to the Rock-A-Billy Entertainment Facebook page or contact the Legion at 403-887-2601.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, said growing COVID-19 case numbers continue to be a concern in the province. (Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Alberta announces 1,077 new COVID-19 cases Thursday

There are currently 14,052 active cases in the province

File Photo
Sylvan Lake Town Council asks for a mask bylaw to be brought forward for consideration

The bylaw would require face coverings in all indoor Town-owned and operated facilities

The Sylvan Lake Food Bank with fully stocked shelves. File Photo
Sylvan Lake Food Bank to open for donations in lieu of Stuff-A-Bus

The annual stuff-a-bus event has been postponed until sometime in the new year

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, said the 500 deaths from COVID-19 in the province are a tragic milestone. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Alberta hits ‘tragic milestone’ with more COVID-19 deaths

Province up to 500 COVID-19 deaths, adds 1,265 cases

The Red Deer Games Foundation has made changes to its grant program as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo supplied)
Red Deer Games Foundation adjusts grant program due to COVID-19 pandemic

The foundation postponed the spring 2020 grant program due to the COVID-19 pandemic

Alexandre Bissonnette, who pleaded guilty to a mass shooting at a Quebec City mosque, arrives at the courthouse in Quebec City on February 21, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mathieu Belanger - POOL
Court strikes down consecutive life sentences; mosque shooter has prison term cut

The decision was appealed by both the defence and the Crown

Gold medallists in the ice dance, free dance figure skating Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, of Canada, pose during their medals ceremony at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Charlie Riedel
Olympic champions Virtue, Moir and Tewksbury among 114 Order of Canada inductees

Moir and Virtue catapulted to national stardom with their gold-medal performances at the Winter Olympics in 2018

Shoppers line up in front of a shop on Montreal’s Saint-Catherine Street in search of Black Friday deals in Montreal, Friday, Nov. 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Black Friday shopping in a pandemic: COVID-19 closes some stores, sales move online

Eric Morris, head of retail at Google Canada, says e-commerce in Canada has doubled during the pandemic.

skip2
Rimbey Christian School students experience the joy of giving

Grades three and four students raised $2,000 for Somalian children

The corporate headquarters of Pfizer Canada are seen in Montreal, Monday, Nov. 9, 2020. The chief medical adviser at Health Canada says Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine could be approved in Canada next month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Health Canada expects first COVID-19 vaccine to be approved next month

Canada has a purchase deal to buy at least 20 million doses of Pfizer’s vaccine,

People wear face masks as they pose next to a Christmas display in Montreal, Sunday, November 22, 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
How to tell family their Christmas gathering is too risky and you’re not going

Dr. Hurst says it’s best to frame the conversation from a place of care, stressing safety precautions.

Most Read