Friday, 13 August 2010
Rosanne Cash at The Sage, Gateshead - review by Terry Kelly
By Terry Kelly
04 August 2010
A RICH musical legacy was handed down to Rosanne Cash by her famous father.
As the daughter of country music icon Johnny Cash, she inherited a bunch of songs which The Man in Black urged her to love and learn.
Some of these songs formed the basis of her latest album, The List, and much of her concert at The Sage.
A packed house saw Cash open with Hank Snow's I'm Movin' On, followed by the Jimmie Rodgers' standard, Miss the Mississippi and You.
But it was only when Cash launched into the more uptempo Heartches by the Number and the even better Sea of Heartbreak that the gig really took off.
Backed by a superb band, including her husband and guitar maestro John Leventhal, she quickly had the audience entranced.
Recalling her father duetting with Bob Dylan in 1969 on the latter's Girl from the North Country, Cash said the culturally significant event made her one of the "coolest" teenagers in the US.
Drawing on more autobiography, she gave a sensitive reading of The Carter Family's Bury Me Under the Weeping Willow.
But the spine-tingling highlight of the concert was a wonderful version of the classic 1967 Bobbie Gentry hit, Ode to Billie Joe.
Duetting with her husband, Cash sang to perfection the haunting, mysterious song about Billie Joe McAllister, who "jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge".
Rosanne Cash played a blinder for her adoring Tyneside fans.
The Man in Black would have been proud.