LOL! I just had the most hilarious dream. In it, a bunch of classic Johnny Cash songs got highly unnecessary remixes and rejigs from the likes of Snoop Dogg, Midnight Juggernauts and Pete Rock. LOL!
And it was all overseen by Johnny Cash’s own son, too! LOL! I tell ya, in my dream I laughed so darn hard that I urinated all over myself. In my dream.
And yet… Why are my legs so warm, wet and itchy? Oh, it’s because the whole project is trufax and the sheer laziness of it has infected me and my ability to control my urethral sphincter.
Johnny Cash Remixed is apparently the brainfart of the Man In Black’s own son, John Carter Cash, but the blame can’t be laid solely at his face; Beyonce‘s dadda Matthew Knowles is involved, and Snoop Dogg is credited as a ‘co-executive producer’.
Snoop appears on the album’s version of Walk The Line, and you’ll be underjoyed to hear he adds the following, highly predictable contributions to the track’s opening seconds:
“What it do, what it do… Big Snoop Dogg… Johnny Cash… remix…”
Nice of him to clear up which version we’re listening to. Also, nice of him to give himself top billing. Richly deserved.
If you’re concerned that’s the only gem in the Snoop/Cash mash, however, fret not – there’s also the near-inevitable:
“JC and me, Dee Oh Double G…”
Elsewhere on the aberration you’ll find the appropriately named Count Da Money Remix of Big River, and Alabama 3 cannily hopping on the bandwagon of another rebel entity with which they’re somewhat unworthy of being associated (see also: The Sopranos).
The best tracks are probably those like the aforementioned Big River and the Pete Rock rejig of Folsom Prison Blues, both of which add modern beatiness to the originals and little else.
At this point I’d like to highlight that I’m not one of those bores who believes in musical sacred cows. If an artist can cover/remix something and make it interesting, good luck to them.
Johnny Cash managed that himself of course, his quivering timbre providing stark interpretations of Nine Inch Nails‘ Hurt and Depeche Mode‘s Personal Jesus amongst others on his 2002 album American IV: The Man Comes Around.
Johnny Cash Remixed, you can be assured, will not be remembered as fondly as that record. Its lazy remixes will sound dated within a year, and it’s difficult to figure out to whom it will appeal.
At least JXL’s Elvis remix, A Little Less Conversation, was big-beat lunacy. The people behind Johnny Cash Remixed could have garnered some bewildered, possibly ironic goodwill if they’d really gone to town and, I dunno, commissioned a dubstep overhaul of Ring Of Fire. And anyone who’s heard Herv?’s Ghetto Bass album knows that, given half a chance, he could crack A Boy Named Sue open and electrify its musty old innards into some kind of dancefloor shitstorm. In a good way.
Of course the chances are “JC” is chuckling from beyond the grave at the sheer brazen hucksterism of the project as it is. But a nice racket is only a nice racket if it makes money, and it’s frankly hard to see who’s going to buy Johnny Cash Remixed. It’s apparently released on June 15th, in case you have too much money lying around.
This was a guest blog by Stuart Waterman from the frankly rather good My Chemical Toilet.