Johnny Cash Impersonator  

                                            kcole83080@aol.com       keith@tampasuperband.com

                                                                   Cell Number - 727-686-8345


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Keith is an absolute pleasure to work with in planning the entertainment for our event, and as far as pure entertainer value, gave us more for our money than we could have asked for! His Johnny Cash and Elvis impersonations were remarkable! He was also excellent at reading the crowd for what they wanted...and even though we gave him a time to end his final set, he did not deny the crowd who wanted him to keep going! Keith is a genuine entertainer for the pure pleasure of pleasing your guests, giving them what they came for...having an absolute time of their lives! Julia Demerau

I thought he was great! Everyone loved it! Thanks again!

-Christine W, Miami, FL

I hired Keith to perform at my mother's surprise 60th birthday party. It was a fantastic show. Keith was better than sliced bread. He moved and grooved with hip gyrations that made us blush with excited anticipation wanting more! He was definitely a hunk of burning love! We would highly recommend Keith! We are having another show with him in May. Kim McAfee Dunedin, FL

-Kim M, Dunedin, FL

Keith was awesome! He was on time and was very accommodating to all of our request. Everyone loved the show he put on and we were very impressed by him. I would recomend him to anyone looking for some good entertainment.

-Heather K, Fort Myers, FL

Keith is an excellent performer, he surpassed our expectations. He was professional, outgoing, very approachable, and an awesome entertainer. He made our wedding perfect.

 -David S, Palm Coast, FL

Elvis-- He was awesome!! Tina -

Tina W, Saint Petersburg, FL

My husband was a huge fan of Elvis Presley at an early age and has collected a lot of memorabilia of Elvis over the years. A Surprise 40th Birthday party was given this past Saturday in his honor. Many guests were invited, including family, friends in his life now, and friends in the past who he went to school with and hadn't seen in years. All had played some part or roll in his 40 years of life. The one person he admired was Elvis, so we hired Keith Coleman thru your company to fill that roll as Elvis and surprise him. Boy, was he surprised! My husband was shocked, and some photo's display a tear or two coming out of his eyes with a solid grin on his face the whole time as he watched Keith/Elvis perform. He couldn't believe it. We later on learned that his parents had taken him to see an Elvis show many years ago when he was younger, and Keith happened to be that same Elvis entertainer. Small world! Keith went out of his way to make this happen and make the party a huge success! Not only did Keith put a smile on my husband's face but everyone else's in the room. He hid out at the neighbors and waited until he got the OK to come over and stood in the front foyer until the introduction was made and came down the hallway as the music played. It was GREAT! Wow! You should have seen all the people's faces especially my husbands. As the entertainment went on, before you know it, my husband was out dancing on the floor, with me along with him. Then before you know it he was dancing with all the ladies in the room. Before you know it he was one step further, Keith had him up there singing with him, the big "E" with his Elvis glasses on and swinging his cape. The Party was on and everyone was clapping and singing and having a good time. Keith went out of his way to be personable with the guests by including them and making them a part of his show. All the pictures show the big grin and laughter of everyone having a great time. My husband said, this is one birthday and one party that he will never forget for a long time. He said, it was great and no one can top that! Keith, you make a great Elvis and we did it!!!! Thank you Keith and thank you Ruby for making this a special memory for my husband as well as for me, his parents and many others. Many Thanks again and Happy Holidays. Marilyn & Ed Bradenton,

 Fl -Marilyn M, Bradenton, FL

Keith was great! He was so accommodating and fun and we really had a great time with him. I would recommend him to anyone.

 -Vicki M, Orlando, FL

Keith Coleman knows what he is doing he was just outstanding and I would reccomend him to everyone I know and dont know. he was GREAT ! thanks Keith your wonderful ! -Anna W, Dover, FL

Keith was very nice and did way over the expectations of impersonators. -Gloria C, Tampa, FL WOW,WOW,WOW and WOW again. What a show, I never dreamed there was entertainment like yours available. I could never "top" this, except by bringing you back, which is what everyone here is clammering for. You and your troupe will be the talk of our "park" for months to come.
Again, thank you for a wonderful evening, you made me look good.

Sandi
PS. I have taken the liberty of copyng your business card and will be recommending your show to other "park"s in the area.
 

 

 

 

 

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Keith Coleman was voted the Best Johnny Cash impersonator in the United States by the NBC Television show " The Next Best Thing " and the only Johnny Cash impersonator asked to fly to LA to be in the finals on National Television. Keith most recently flew to Hollywood for 1 week to film the season finale of the prime time television show " The Finder" on Fox Network. The show was filmed at Twenth Century Fox in Hollywood.

 

 

 

 

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Click for video of The Life and Times of Johnny Cash

                                              

Studio video                 Live show video             convention video

"Possibly the most talented vocal impressionist Ever"

"Times" New Orleans

Keith Coleman's Tribute to Johnny Cash is as close as you will ever get to spending the evening at a Johnny Cash Concert.  His uncanny resemblance to Johnny Cash and  attention to the detail of Cash's mannerisms is brilliant.

Keith Coleman has performed his tribute to Johnny Cash throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Europe. He not only naturally looks like the Man in Black but his vocal impression of Cash is nothing short of amazing. Keith has performed for over 25 years with the Las Vegas Revue Show. He has also performed with the Hollywood On Tour group through out the United States. This is truly a show and not just a 45 minute vocal impression. When the night is over you will actually feel like you have spent the evening with Johnny Cash.

Keith is an experienced impersonator having done an impersonation of Elvis Presley throughout the United States and Europe. Keith also performed as Neil Diamond with the Hollywood On Tour group in Florida.

Keith's Partner, Ruby Tuesday adds to the show with her impersonation of June Carter. Together they bring the dynamic Duo to life with a fever that is second to none.

Keith is considered one of the Top Johnny Cash impersonators  and Johnny Cash Tribute artist in the United States. He has performed his Tribute to Johnny Cash throughout the United States and Europe. He now performs regularly in Florida and most recently in the Tampa Bay and Orlando area.

 

 

Keith Coleman and Ruby Tuesday just recently completed a 2 week concert run at Goodtimes Theatre in Bearcreek Farms Country Resort in Bryant Indiana doing his Tribute to Johnny Cash. . The Goodtimes theatre is an 800 seat Branson style show room. Keith and Ruby performed their Life an Times of Johnny Cash show doing their impersonation of Johnny Cash and June Carter.. This is a 90 minute tribute to Johnny and June. It is a unique show as it is narrated by June and tells their story from her perspective. It was a great success and the show has been booked back for next season.

 

 

 

Keith Sings
MP3s - Johnny Cash Short Version Demo's
6. Man In Black
  Keith is considered one of the Top Johnny Cash impersonators  and Johnny Cash Tribute artist in the United States. He has performed his Tribute to Johnny Cash throughout the United States and Europe. He now performs regularly in Florida and most recently in the Tampa Bay and Orlando area.

John R. "Johnny" Cash[2] (February 26, 1932 September 12, 2003), born J. R. Cash, was an American singer-songwriter, actor,[3] and author,[3] who has been called one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century.[4] Although he is primarily remembered as a country music artist, his songs and sound spanned many other genres including rockabilly and rock and roll especially early in his career as well as blues, folk, and gospel. Late in his career, Cash covered songs by several rock artists, among them the industrial rock band Nine Inch Nails[5][6] and the synthpop band Depeche Mode.[6][7][8]

Johnny Cash was known for his deep, distinctive bass-baritone voice;[9][10][11] for the "boom-chicka-boom" freight train sound of his Tennessee Three backing band; for his rebelliousness,[12][13] coupled with an increasingly somber and humble demeanor;[9] for providing free concerts inside prison walls;[14][15] and for his dark performance clothing, which earned him the nickname "The Man in Black".[16] He traditionally started his concerts by saying, "Hello, I'm Johnny Cash."[17][18] and usually following it up with his standard "Folsom Prison Blues."

Much of Cash's music, especially that of his later career, echoed themes of sorrow, moral tribulation and redemption.[9][19] His signature songs include "I Walk the Line", "Folsom Prison Blues", "Ring of Fire", "Get Rhythm" and "Man in Black". He also recorded humorous numbers, such as "One Piece at a Time" and "A Boy Named Sue"; a duet with his future wife, June Carter, called "Jackson"; as well as railroad songs including "Hey, Porter" and "Rock Island Line".[20]

Cash, a devout but troubled Christian,[21][22] has been characterized "as a lens through which to view American contradictions and challenges."[23][24][25] A Biblical scholar,[3][26][27] he penned a Christian novel entitled Man In White,[28][29] and he made a spoken word recording of the entire New King James Version of the New Testament.[30][31] Even so, Cash declared that he was "the biggest sinner of them all", and viewed himself overall as a complicated and contradictory man.[32][33] Accordingly,[34] Cash is said to have "contained multitudes", and has been deemed "the philosopher-prince of American country music".[35][36]

Early career

In 1954, Cash and Vivian moved to Memphis, Tennessee, where he sold appliances while studying to be a radio announcer. At night he played with guitarist Luther Perkins and bassist Marshall Grant. Perkins and Grant were known as the Tennessee Two. Cash worked up the courage to visit the Sun Records studio, hoping to get a recording contract. After auditioning for Sam Phillips, singing mostly gospel songs, Phillips told him that gospel was unmarketable. It was once rumored that Phillips told Cash to "go home and sin, then come back with a song I can sell," though Cash refuted that Phillips made any such comment in a 2002 interview.[56] Cash eventually won over the producer with new songs delivered in his early frenetic style. His first recordings at Sun, "Hey Porter" and "Cry! Cry! Cry!", were released in 1955 and met with reasonable success on the country hit parade.

On December 4, 1956, Elvis Presley dropped in on studio owner Sam Phillips to pay a social visit while Carl Perkins was in the studio cutting new tracks, with Jerry Lee Lewis backing him on piano. Cash was also in the studio and the four started an impromptu jam session. Phillips left the tapes running and the recordings, almost half of which were gospel songs, survived and have since been released under the title Million Dollar Quartet.

Cash's next record, "Folsom Prison Blues", made the country Top 5, and "I Walk the Line" became No. 1 on the country charts and entered the pop charts Top 20. "Home of the Blues" followed, recorded in July 1957. That same year Cash became the first Sun artist to release a long-playing album. Although he was Sun's most consistently best-selling and prolific artist at that time, Cash felt constrained by his contract with the small label. Presley had already left Sun, and Phillips was focusing most of his attention and promotion on Lewis. The following year Cash left the label to sign a lucrative offer with Columbia Records, where his single "Don't Take Your Guns to Town" became one of his biggest hits.

In the early 1960s, Cash toured with the Carter Family, which by this time regularly included Mother Maybelle's daughters, Anita, June and Helen. June, whom Cash would eventually marry, later recalled admiring him from afar during these tours. In the 1960s he appeared on Pete Seeger's short lived Rainbow Quest.[57]

He also acted in a 1961 film entitled Five Minutes to Live, later re-released as Door-to-door Maniac. He also wrote and sang the opening theme.

Outlaw image

As his career was taking off in the early 1960s, Cash started drinking heavily and became addicted to amphetamines and barbiturates. For a brief time, he shared an apartment in Nashville with Waylon Jennings, who was heavily addicted to amphetamines. Cash used the uppers to stay awake during tours. Friends joked about his "nervousness" and erratic behavior, many ignoring the warning signs of his worsening drug addiction. In a behind-the-scenes look at The Johnny Cash Show, Cash claims to have "tried every drug there was to try."

Although in many ways spiraling out of control, Cash's frenetic creativity was still delivering hits. His rendition of "Ring of Fire" was a crossover hit, reaching No. 1 on the country charts and entering the Top 20 on the pop charts. The song was written by June Carter and Merle Kilgore. The song was originally performed by Carter's sister, but the signature mariachi-style horn arrangement was provided by Cash, who said that it had come to him in a dream.

In June 1965, his truck caught fire due to an overheated wheel bearing, triggering a forest fire that burned several hundred acres in Los Padres National Forest in California.[58][59] When the judge asked Cash why he did it, Cash said, "I didn't do it, my truck did, and it's dead, so you can't question it."[47] The fire destroyed 508 acres (2.06 km2), burning the foliage off three mountains and killing 49 of the refuge's 53 endangered condors. Cash was unrepentant: "I don't care about your damn yellow buzzards." The federal government sued him and was awarded $125,172 ($863,091 in current dollar terms). Cash eventually settled the case and paid $82,001.[60] He said he was the only person ever sued by the government for starting a forest fire.[47]

Although Cash carefully cultivated a romantic outlaw image, he never served a prison sentence. Despite landing in jail seven times for misdemeanors, each stay lasted only a single night. His most infamous run-in with the law occurred while on tour in 1965, when he was arrested by a narcotics squad in El Paso, Texas. The officers suspected that he was smuggling heroin from Mexico, but it was prescription narcotics and amphetamines that the singer had hidden inside his guitar case. Because they were prescription drugs rather than illegal narcotics, he received a suspended sentence.

Johnny Cash and his second wife, June Carter

Cash was later arrested on May 11, 1965, in Starkville, Mississippi, for trespassing late at night onto private property to pick flowers. (This incident gave the spark for the song "Starkville City Jail", which he spoke about on his live At San Quentin prison album.)

In the mid 1960s, Cash released a number of concept albums, including Ballads Of the True West (1965), an experimental double record mixing authentic frontier songs with Cash's spoken narration, and Bitter Tears (1964), with songs highlighting the plight of the Native Americans. His drug addiction was at its worst at this point, and his destructive behavior led to a divorce from his first wife and canceled performances.

In 1967, Cash's duet with Carter, "Jackson", won a Grammy Award.

Johnny Cash's final arrest was in Walker County, GA where he was taken in after being involved in a car accident while carrying a bag of prescription pills. Cash attempted to bribe a local deputy, who turned the money down, and then spent the night in a LaFayette, GA jail. The singer was released after a long talk with Sheriff Ralph Jones, who warned him of his dangerous behavior and wasted potential. Johnny credited that experience for saving his life, and he later came back to LaFayette to play a benefit concert that attracted 12,000 people (the city population was less than 9,000 at the time) and raised $75,000 for the high school.[61]

Cash quit using drugs in 1968, after a spiritual epiphany in the Nickajack Cave, when he attempted to commit suicide while under the heavy influence of drugs. He descended deeper into the cave, trying to lose himself and "just die", when he passed out on the floor. He reported to be exhausted and feeling at the end of his rope when he felt God's presence in his heart and managed to struggle out of the cave (despite the exhaustion) by following a faint light and slight breeze. To him, it was his own rebirth. June, Maybelle, and Ezra Carter moved into Cash's mansion for a month to help him conquer his addiction. Cash proposed onstage to June at a concert at the London Gardens in London, Ontario, Canada on February 22, 1968; the couple married a week later (on March 1) in Franklin, Kentucky. June had agreed to marry Cash after he had 'cleaned up'.[62] He rediscovered his Christian faith, taking an "altar call" in Evangel Temple, a small church in the Nashville area, pastored by Rev. Jimmy Rodgers Snow, son of country music legend Hank Snow. Cash chose this church over many larger celebrity churches in the Nashville area because he said that there he was treated like just another parishioner and not a celebrity[citation needed].

Folsom Prison Blues

Cash felt great compassion for prisoners. He began performing concerts at various prisons starting in the late 1950s.His first ever prison concert was held on January 1, 1958 at San Quentin State Prison.[63] These performances led to a pair of highly successful live albums, Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison (1968) and Johnny Cash at San Quentin (1969).

The Folsom Prison record was introduced by a rendition of his classic "Folsom Prison Blues", while the San Quentin record included the crossover hit single "A Boy Named Sue", a Shel Silverstein-penned novelty song that reached No. 1 on the country charts and No. 2 on the U.S. Top Ten pop charts. The AM versions of the latter contained a couple of profanities which were edited out. The modern CD versions are unedited and uncensored and thus also longer than the original vinyl albums, though they still retain the audience reaction overdubs of the originals.

In addition to his performances at U.S. prisons, Cash also performed at the ster ker Prison in Sweden in 1972. The live album P ster ker ("At ster ker") was released in 1973. Between the songs, Cash can be heard speaking Swedish, which was greatly appreciated by the inmates."The Man in Black"

Cash advocated prison reform at his July 1972 meeting with United States President Richard Nixon.

From 1969 to 1971, Cash starred in his own television show, The Johnny Cash Show, on the ABC network. The Statler Brothers opened up for him in every episode; the Carter Family and rockabilly legend Carl Perkins were also part of the regular show entourage. However, Cash also enjoyed booking more contemporary performers as guests; such notables included Neil Young, Louis Armstrong, Kenny Rogers and The First Edition (who appeared a record four times on his show), James Taylor, Ray Charles, Eric Clapton (then leading Derek and the Dominos), and Bob Dylan.

Cash had met with Dylan in the mid 1960s and became closer friends when they were neighbors in the late 1960s in Woodstock, New York. Cash was enthusiastic about reintroducing the reclusive Dylan to his audience. Cash sang a duet with Dylan on Dylan's country album Nashville Skyline and also wrote the album's Grammy-winning liner notes.

Another artist who received a major career boost from The Johnny Cash Show was songwriter Kris Kristofferson, who was beginning to make a name for himself as a singer/songwriter. During a live performance of Kristofferson's "Sunday Mornin' Comin' Down", Cash refused to change the lyrics to suit network executives, singing the song with its references to marijuana intact: "On a Sunday morning sidewalk / I'm wishin', Lord, that I was stoned."[64]

By the early 1970s, he had crystallized his public image as "The Man in Black". He regularly performed dressed all in black, wearing a long black knee-length coat. This outfit stood in contrast to the costumes worn by most of the major country acts in his day: rhinestone suit and cowboy boots. In 1971, Cash wrote the song "Man in Black", to help explain his dress code: "We're doing mighty fine I do suppose / In our streak of lightning cars and fancy clothes / But just so we're reminded of the ones who are held back / Up front there ought to be a man in black."

He wore black on behalf of the poor and hungry, on behalf of "the prisoner who has long paid for his crime",[65] and on behalf of those who have been betrayed by age or drugs.[65] "And," Cash added, "with the Vietnam War as painful in my mind as it was in most other Americans', I wore it 'in mournin' for the lives that could have been.' ... Apart from the Vietnam War being over, I don't see much reason to change my position ... The old are still neglected, the poor are still poor, the young are still dying before their time, and we're not making many moves to make things right. There's still plenty of darkness to carry off."[65]

He and his band had initially worn black shirts because that was the only matching color they had among their various outfits.[47] He wore other colors on stage early in his career, but he claimed to like wearing black both on and off stage. He stated that, political reasons aside, he simply liked black as his on-stage color.[47] To this day, the United States Navy's winter blue service uniform is referred to by sailors as "Johnny Cashes", as the uniform's shirt, tie, and trousers are solid black.[66]

In the mid 1970s, Cash's popularity and number of hit songs began to decline, but his autobiography (the first of two), titled Man in Black, was published in 1975 and sold 1.3 million copies. A second, Cash: The Autobiography, appeared in 1997. His friendship with Billy Graham led to the production of a film about the life of Jesus, The Gospel Road, which Cash co-wrote and narrated.

He also continued to appear on television, hosting an annual Christmas special on CBS throughout the 1970s. Later television appearances included a role in an episode of Columbo (Swan Song). He also appeared with his wife on an episode of Little House on the Prairie entitled "The Collection" and gave a performance as John Brown in the 1985 American Civil War television mini-series North and South. He had a returning role as Kid Cole on the CBS series Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman in the mid-1990s.

He was friendly with every United States President starting with Richard Nixon. He was closest with Jimmy Carter, who became a very close friend.[47] He stated that he found all of them personally charming, noting that this was probably essential to getting oneself elected.[47]

When invited to perform at the White House for the first time in 1972, Richard Nixon's office requested that he play "Okie from Muskogee" (a satirical Merle Haggard song about people who despised youthful drug users and war protesters) and "Welfare Cadillac" (a Guy Drake song which denies the integrity of welfare recipients). Cash declined to play either and instead selected other songs, including "The Ballad of Ira Hayes" (about a brave Native-American World War II veteran who was mistreated upon his return to Arizona), and his own compositions, "What is Truth?" and "Man in Black". Cash wrote that the reasons for denying Nixon's song choices were not knowing them and having fairly short notice to rehearse them, rather than any political reason.[47] However, Cash added, even if Nixon's office had given Cash enough time to learn and rehearse the songs, their choice of pieces that conveyed "antihippie and antiblack" sentiments might have backfired.[67]

Highwaymen

In 1980, Cash became the Country Music Hall of Fame's youngest living inductee at age forty-eight, but during the 1980s his records failed to make a major impact on the country charts, although he continued to tour successfully. In the mid 1980s, he recorded and toured with Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, and Kris Kristofferson as The Highwaymen, making two hit albums.

During this period, Cash appeared in a number of television films. In 1981, he starred in The Pride of Jesse Hallam, winning fine reviews for a film that called attention to adult illiteracy. In the same year, Cash appeared as a "very special guest star" in an episode of the Muppet Show. In 1983, he appeared as a heroic sheriff in Murder in Coweta County, based on a real-life Georgia murder case, which co-starred Andy Griffith as his nemesis. Cash had tried for years to make the film, for which he won acclaim.

Cash relapsed into addiction after being administered painkillers for a serious abdominal injury in 1983 caused by an unusual incident in which he was kicked and wounded by an ostrich he kept on his farm.[68]

At a hospital visit in 1988, this time to watch over Waylon Jennings (who was recovering from a heart attack), Jennings suggested that Cash have himself checked into the hospital for his own heart condition. Doctors recommended preventive heart surgery, and Cash underwent double bypass surgery in the same hospital. Both recovered, although Cash refused to use any prescription painkillers, fearing a relapse into dependency. Cash later claimed that during his operation, he had what is called a "near death experience". He said he had visions of Heaven that were so beautiful that he was angry when he woke up alive.

Cash's recording career and his general relationship with the Nashville establishment were at an all-time low in the 1980s. He realized that his record label of nearly 30 years, Columbia, was growing indifferent to him and wasn't properly marketing him (he was "invisible" during that time, as he said in his autobiography). Cash recorded an intentionally awful song to protest, a self-parody. "Chicken in Black" was about Cash's brain being transplanted into a chicken. Ironically, the song turned out to be a larger commercial success than any of his other recent material. Nevertheless, he was hoping to kill the relationship with the label before they did, and it was not long after "Chicken in Black" that Columbia and Cash parted ways.

In 1986, Cash returned to Sun Studios in Memphis to team up with Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Carl Perkins to create the album Class of '55. Also in 1986, Cash published his only novel, Man in White, a book about Saul and his conversion to become the Apostle Paul. He also recorded Johnny Cash Reads The Complete New Testament in 1990.

American Recordings

Johnny Cash sings a duet with a Navy lieutenant c.1987.

After Columbia Records dropped Cash from his recording contract, he had a short and unsuccessful stint with Mercury Records from 1987 to 1991 (see Johnny Cash discography).

In 1991, Cash sang lead vocals on a cover version of "Man in Black" for the Christian punk band One Bad Pig's album I Scream Sunday.

His career was rejuvenated in the 1990s, leading to popularity among a younger audience not traditionally interested in country music. In 1993, he sang the vocal on U2's "The Wanderer" for their album Zooropa. Although he was no longer sought after by major labels, Cash was approached by producer Rick Rubin and offered a contract with Rubin's American Recordings label, better known for rap and hard rock.

Under Rubin's supervision, he recorded the album American Recordings (1994) in his living room, accompanied only by his guitar. That guitar was a Martin dreadnought guitar one of many Cash played throughout his career.[69] The album featured several covers of contemporary artists selected by Rubin and had much critical and commercial success, winning a Grammy for Best Contemporary Folk Album. Cash wrote that his reception at the 1994 Glastonbury Festival was one of the highlights of his career. This was the beginning of a decade of music industry accolades and surprising commercial success.

Cash and his wife appeared on a number of episodes of the popular television series Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman starring Jane Seymour. The actress thought so highly of Cash that she later named one of her twin sons after him. He lent his voice for a cartoon cameo in an episode of The Simpsons, with his voice as that of a coyote that guides Homer on a spiritual quest. In 1996, Cash enlisted the accompaniment of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and released a sequel to American Recordings, Unchained, which won a Grammy for Best Country Album. Cash, believing he did not explain enough of himself in his 1975 autobiography Man in Black, wrote another autobiography in 1997 entitled Cash: The Autobiography.

[edit] Last years and death

In 1997, Cash was diagnosed with the neurodegenerative disease Shy-Drager syndrome, a form of Parkinson's disease. The diagnosis was later altered to autonomic neuropathy associated with diabetes. This illness forced Cash to curtail his touring. He was hospitalized in 1998 with severe pneumonia, which damaged his lungs. The albums American III: Solitary Man (2000) and American IV: The Man Comes Around (2002) contained Cash's response to his illness in the form of songs of a slightly more somber tone than the first two American albums. The video that was released for "Hurt", a cover of the song by Nine Inch Nails, fits Cash's view of his past and feelings of regret. The video for the song, from American IV, is now generally recognized as "his epitaph,"[70] and received particular critical and popular acclaim.

Cashcartergrab.jpgKeith Keith Coleman is  one of the best Johnny Cash impersonators. Tribute to Johnny Cash, Johnny Cash Tribute Artist, Johnny Cash and June Carter, June Carter impersonator.

June Carter Cash died on May 15, 2003, at the age of 73. June had told Cash to keep working, so he continued to record and even performed a couple of surprise shows at the Carter Family Fold outside Bristol, Virginia. At the July 5, 2003 concert (his last public performance), before singing "Ring of Fire", Cash read a statement about his late wife that he had written shortly before taking the stage:

The spirit of June Carter overshadows me tonight with the love she had for me and the love I have for her. We connect somewhere between here and heaven. She came down for a short visit, I guess, from heaven to visit with me tonight to give me courage and inspiration like she always has.

Cash died of complications from diabetes less than four months after his wife, at 2:00 a.m. CT on September 12, 2003, while hospitalized at Baptist Hospital in Nashville. He was buried next to his wife in Hendersonville Memory Gardens near his home in Hendersonville, Tennessee.

His stepdaughter, Rosie (Nix) Adams and another passenger were found dead on a bus in Montgomery County, Tennessee, on October 24, 2003. It was speculated that the deaths may have been caused by carbon monoxide from the lanterns in the bus. Adams was 45 when she died. She was buried in the Hendersonville Memory Gardens, near her mother and stepfather.

On May 24, 2005, Vivian Liberto, Cash's first wife and the mother of Rosanne Cash and three other daughters, died from surgery to remove lung cancer at the age of 71. It was her daughter Rosanne's 50th birthday.[71]

In June 2005, his lakeside home on Caudill Drive in Hendersonville was put up for sale by his estate. In January 2006, the house was sold to Bee Gees vocalist Barry Gibb and wife Linda and titled in their Florida limited liability company for $2.3 million. The listing agent was Cash's younger brother, Tommy Cash. The home was destroyed by fire on April 10, 2007.[72]

One of Cash's final collaborations with producer Rick Rubin, entitled American V: A Hundred Highways, was released posthumously on July 4, 2006. The album debuted in the #1 position on the Billboard Top 200 album chart for the week ending July 22, 2006.

On February 26, 2010, what would have been Cash's 78th birthday, the Cash Family, Rick Rubin, and Lost Highway Records released his second posthumous record, entitled American VI: Ain't No Grave.

[edit] Legacy

From his early days as a pioneer of rockabilly and rock and roll in the 1950s, to his decades as an international representative of country music, to his resurgence to fame in the 1990s as a living legend and an alternative country icon, Cash influenced countless artists and left a large body of work. Upon his death, Cash was revered by the greatest popular musicians of his time. His rebellious image and often anti-authoritarian stance influenced the punk rock movement.[73][74]

Among Cash's children, his daughter Rosanne Cash (by first wife Vivian Liberto) and his son John Carter Cash (by June Carter Cash) are notable country-music musicians in their own right.

Cash nurtured and defended artists on the fringes of what was acceptable in country music even while serving as the country music establishment's most visible symbol. At an all-star TNT concert in 1999, a diverse group of artists paid him tribute, including Bob Dylan, Chris Isaak, Wyclef Jean, Norah Jones, Kris Kristofferson, Willie Nelson, Dom DeLuise and U2. Cash himself appeared at the end and performed for the first time in more than a year. Two tribute albums were released shortly before his death; Kindred Spirits contains works from established artists, while Dressed in Black contains works from many lesser-known artists.

In total, he wrote over 1,000 songs and released dozens of albums. A box set titled Unearthed was issued posthumously. It included four CDs of unreleased material recorded with Rubin as well as a Best of Cash on American retrospective CD.

In recognition of his lifelong support of SOS Children's Villages, his family invited friends and fans to donate to that charity in his memory. He had a personal link with the SOS village in Diessen, at the Ammersee Lake in Southern Germany, near where he was stationed as a GI, and also with the SOS village in Barrett Town, by Montego Bay, near his holiday home in Jamaica.[75] The Johnny Cash Memorial Fund was founded.[76]

In 1999, Cash received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2004, Rolling Stone Magazine ranked Cash[77] #31 on their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.[78]

In a tribute to Cash after his death, country music singer Gary Allan included the song "Nickajack Cave (Johnny Cash's Redemption)" on his 2005 album entitled Tough All Over. The song chronicles Cash hitting rock bottom and subsequently resurrecting his life and career.

The main street in Hendersonville, Tennessee, Highway 31E, is known as "Johnny Cash Parkway".

The Johnny Cash Museum is located in Hendersonville, Tennessee.

On November 2 4, 2007, the Johnny Cash Flower Pickin' Festival was held in Starkville, Mississippi. Starkville, where Cash was arrested over 40 years earlier and held overnight at the city jail on May 11, 1965, inspired Cash to write the song "Starkville City Jail". The festival, where he was offered a symbolic posthumous pardon, honored Cash's life and music, and was expected to become an annual event.[79]

JC Unit One, Johnny Cash's private tour bus from 1980 until 2003, was put on exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame + Museum in 2007. The Cleveland, Ohio museum offers public tours of the bus on a seasonal basis (it is stored during the winter months and not exhibited during those times).

 

 
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