I have a homework assignment for you. I want you to go out and listen to live music this week featuring Grand Junction area musicians, and.... request these songs.

Tomorrow, Wednesday, February 26, is Johnny Cash's birthday. The man would have turned 88 this year.

It just so happens some of your favorite Western Colorado musicians, Gerry Goodman, for example, are HUGE Johnny Cash fans. Ted Dussor is a pretty big fan, too. Bad Bobby Walker... BIG fan. What do these local musicians have in common? They all have gigs this week, some of them on Johnny Cash's birthday.

In years past, KEKB used to throw Johnny Cash birthday parties. Each year we would have Homestyle Bakery whip up a black "Happy Birthday Johnny Cash" birthday cake. Imagine, if you will, dozens of bar-goers walking around with black lips and teeth.

Check out the photo at the top. That's local singer/guitarist Greg Achord at the Johnny Cash birthday celebration at Tenacious Brothers about six or seven years ago. The photo below features a local street person who stopped in to help celebrate.

Johnny Cash Birthday Cake
Waylon Jordan

We did a number of these parties at several venues:

  • Tenacious Brothers
  • Palisade Livery Saloon
  • Mesa Theater

Each of these birthday bashes ended up meeting the same fate. They bombed. It seems people weren't too excited about celebrating the Man in Black's next trip around the sun.

Well... I don't care if no one else is interested. I DIG Johnny Cash and plan to celebrate. I'm going to go to every live music event in Grand Junction tomorrow and harass the bands about playing some Johnny Cash. Are you with me? Here's a list of bands and gigs for the next three days (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, February 25-27):

Tuesday, February 25

  • Goodman Unplugged at Bailey's from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Tuesday Blues Jam (featuring Ted Dussor) at Charlie Dwellington's from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Wednesday, February 26

  • Walker Goodman Blues at Edgewater Brewery from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Thursday, February 27

  • Gary Russell at Bailey's from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Jetmore Goodman at Wingers Bar and Pool Hall from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.

I spoke with Gerry Goodman about this, and he is totally into playing Cash tonight (Tuesday) at Bailey's. Wednesday's gig, though, is Blues night. He said he would be happy to throw on some "Folsom Prison Blues."

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Let's challenge the guys at the Tuesday Blues Jam at Charlie Dwellington's to play some Cash. It's a Jam Night, so anything goes.

Celebrating Johnny Cash's birthday has become something of a national phenomenon. People in Tennessee take it very seriously. We've had some fun with it here, too. Happy birthday, Johnny Cash.

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