Scrub my Pot! You'll never believe what an incredible night CW and I had attending the opening night of the Broadway show using all Johnny Cash music, "Ring of Fire, the Musical" and then we got to go to the after party as well.
First everyone who attended was asked to wear black in honor of Cash, the original Man in Black himself, and seeing the audience so dressed was impressive in itself. We were seated next to the most wonderful couple, John and Anne, who had flown in all the way from Virginia, on that very day just to attend the opening. As soon as John and CW clapped eyes on each other's big black cowboy hats they knew they were going to be great friends. As John said to CW, "Where are all the other outlaws here? Did they leave their hats at home?" Anne said, "Since he brought it all this way I said you have to wear it." We hit it off immediately and it felt more like we had found our old friends and were just catching up.
As we all sat there in the darkened theatre and listened to the music of Mr.Cash something magical began to happen. We all laughed, cried, clapped along and had a marvelous time ending in a thunderous standing ovation that went on and on until the cast finally returned for another bow, some even pulling their costumes back on as if they were surprised. Anne and I were amazed by their humbleness because we all felt they knocked it out of the park-great singing and great acting. We loved it!
Off to the opening night party where my thrill of thrills was meeting the legendary Cowboy Jack Clements-who worked in the original Sun Studios and was the man who for all intents and purposes created Rock 'n Roll when he asked Jerry Lee Lewis to record one of his live songs because there was extra tape and he mixed it on the spot. A few weeks later, "A Whole Lotta Shakin Goin' On" was released and musical history was made forever. I was lucky enough to have my photo taken with the man himself.
Cowboy Jack Clements and his fan, Lindy LOO
They had a fantastic band imported from Nashville, The Stringdusters, a bluegrass band that had some exceptional pickers, one of whom was Chris Eldridge. Turns out he knows our friend Eli Smith who has become a regular member of our monthly Hillbilly Hayride - they went to college together and we promised to pass on Big Hellos.
There were even special Ring of Fire glasses provided by one of the sponsors, Makers Mark, ringed in red like their trademark bottle. CW managed to put away enough and flirt enough with the hostesses to acquire us a whole set of four. CW and I had our own pictures taken in front of the backdrop - we were having such a fantastic time.
My next big thrill of the night came when I was at the sushi table and I noticed the most incredible black on black embroidery on the back of a jacket, in the manner of a real Manuel suit, and who should the wearer turn around and be but John Carter Cash himself. Somehow I found my wits and managed to have a brief conversation with him, telling him how happy I am to see him in the new Brad Paisley video and that I have followed his own producing career for some time. He told me he felt certain that his mom and dad would be so happy with the show and that he and his own wife had been blessed just two weeks earlier with a brand new baby boy.
Just when I thought nothing could be any better than that, I ran into one of the leads of the show, who actually recognized ME! He had come to the Johnny Cash 74th Birthday celebration I had hosted at Southpaw in Brooklyn and said, "Lindy LOO-you are the greatest!" I had met his mother at the intermission - a lovely southern lady who hails from Raleigh, NC who told me Jason actually met Johnny Cash in person when he was just 15 and now here he is on Broadway singing his songs.
Lindy Loo running her mouth with star of Ring of Fire, Jason Edwards. He even said he might come out and sing with us at the Hillbilly Hayride one of these days. All in all it was a night we will treasure for the rest of our lives. A special thank you for it goes out to Kenny Greenblatt and Alan Glist-two of the producers of the show who were kind enough to invite us as their guests. One thing is certain we fell into a burning Ring of Fire and we never wanted to leave. Run to see it while you've got the chance. Take it from Lindy LOO!
Here I am with Jason Edwards running my mouth. What a surprise huh?