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Johnny Cash - A Concert Behind Prison Walls

3.8 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Linda Ronstadt and Roy Clark join the Man in Black for a nationally televised live concert appearance, featuring the songs Folsom Prison Blues; Desperado; You're No Good; Shuckin' the Corn; A Boy Named Sue; Silver Threads and Golden Needles , and more. 1977/color/60 min/NR/fullscreen.

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The late Man in Black headlines this 1976 televised concert, shot inside the Tennessee State Prison and featuring post-hippie chanteuse Linda Ronstadt, country picker Roy Clark, and, rather incongruously, tuxedo-ed comedian Foster Brooks, whose '70s drunk act was often funny on, say, Dean Martin's Celebrity Roast, but seems a little wrong for an audience of felons.

Ronstadt is surely appreciated for her short skirt and sweet pop-blues (her "Love Has No Pride" nears epic intensity), and Clark's showmanship works with kitsch like "Orange Blossom Special." But it's Cash's "Sunday Morning Coming Down," Folsom Prison Blues," and famously bloody "Boy Named Sue" that resonate most powerfully with his, uh, captive audience. There's a touch of condescension toward the prisoners in some stage patter and song choices: Sure, Ronstadt had a hit with "Desperado" at the time, but here it sounds like she's wagging her finger at the crowd. --Tom Keogh


Special Features

  • Songs: Folsom Prison Blues, Sunday Morning Coming down, Jacob Green, Desperado, You're No Good, Rolling in My Sweet Baby's Arms, That Honeymoon Feeling, Shuckin' the Corn, Half as Much, Love Has No Pride, Silver Threads and Golden Needles, Hey Porter, Orange Blossom Special, Boy Named Sue
  • With appearances by Linda Ronstadt, Roy Clark, and Foster Brooks

Product Details

  • Actors: Johnny Cash, Linda Ronstadt, Roy Clark
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dolby, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Eagle Rock Ent
  • DVD Release Date: September 23, 2003
  • Run Time: 60 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000AOV7O
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #77,582 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
I watched this DVD in order to see and hear the great Johnny Cash. He absolutely does not disappoint. It's good to see him young and strong. He sings six songs, including " Sunday Morning Coming Down " and " Jacob Green " , and a raucous version of " Boy Named Sue " , not one of my favorite songs, but one that this audience absolutely loved.

This is a very high energy performance by Cash. He gives it all he's got. The empathy and respect that the Man in Black had for his fellow sinners is very evident; the disc is worth viewing for these songs alone.

But, for me, the performance by Linda Ronstadt was also wonderful. I had no idea that she was on this disc. This is a young and beautiful Linda Ronstadt, just on the verge of major superstardom. Her voice is just astonishing, and this performance ( "Desperado", " You're No Good ", " Love Has No Pride ", and " Silver Threads and Golden Needles " ) blows away the audience--and the DVD viewer.

As with all well-made concert videos, some of the best moments are the shots of the audience. They were clearly under orders not to move around --at all --, as they were right next to the artists. So there were no " standing ovations ". But you can tell how very much they loved this show, not just Johnny Cash and Linda Ronstadt, but also comedian Foster Brooks ( never saw him before, his slightly off-color humor went over fantastically with this audience! ).

Could have done without the Roy Clark segment, not sure that this was the best venue for him, talented musician that he is.

Overall, this is one of the best concert films I have ever seen. Highly recommended.
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Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
This concert is not exclusively Johnny Cash as it implies. But if it is worth it just to have Johnny Cash performing live in the early days, then get it. You will enjoy a particular one, "Boy Named Sue."

It is shot in a Tennessee prison in 1977 and 60 minutes. But also performing is Linda Ronstadt, Roy Clark and Foster Brooks, aka, the drunk. Carl Perkins plays guitar with Johnny.

The concert starts with "Folsom Prison Blues", "Sunday Morning Coming Down" and a little known song by Cash, "Jacob Green" based on a true story of a young man who committed suicide in prison.

Linda Ronstadt sings "Desperado", "You're No Good", Silver Threads and Golden Needles" and "Love Has No Pride".

Guitarist Roy Clark performs a few also, "Rolling in my Sweet Baby's Arms, "That Honeymoon Feeling". Foster Brooks does a five minute stand-up and sings an old classic "Half As Much"

Concluding the concert and back to Johnny Cash, doing "Hey Porter", "Orange Blossom Special" and the entertaining "Boy Named Sue".

If it's worth it to you to have some hits of Johnny Cash...LIVE, then get the tape!

A little note: If you ever want to hear a tribute song to Johnny, get the humorous Shel Silverstein's "Front Row Seat to Hear Ole Johnny Sing" It is the best! .....MzRizz
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
By the picture on this DVD and the title you would think it's a full lenghth Johnny Cash video....but...most of this video is Linda (i stole Roy's musicians) Ronstadt, Roy Clark (which if you've never seen him before is quite a good banjo player, and Foster Brooks (i guess you have to be from another generation to get his humour).
Anyhow, the couple of numbers that Johnny Cash DOES play are really good...especially the Kris Kristofferson song "Saturday Morning Coming Down". Overall I would say buy this if you're a true country fan or if you wanna see a small glimpse of the man in Black.
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Format: DVD
I love Johnny Cash's performance on this dvd. The problem is that the disc also contains lengthy segments from Linda Ronstadt, Foster Brooks, and Roy Clark -- great performers in their own right, but I didn't buy the dvd for their portion of the show. I bought it to see Johnny Cash. The title of the dvd, then, seems misleading to me. If you're looking for a full performance from Cash, this isn't it. The dvd cover also says that the disc runs for approximately 60 minutes. It runs 48 minutes.
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Format: VHS Tape
I don't know what some of these other reviewers were thinking. Biggest complaint being deceptive advertising. The DVD clearly states that their are other performers in the show, maybe they missed that, how I don't know. Another gripe was the sound was bad. If I could get more footage from this era that sounded as good it would be fortunate. The audio is very good, all the different instuments come through as well as the vocals and backing vocals all clear and very audble. This complaint is my favorite. One reviewer claimed Johnny Cash delivered a poor performance. Maybe he hasn't seen much footage of The Man In Black but I have and it's standard issue Johnny, soulful, heartfelt and he rocks. The only reason I didn't give it five stars is due to the standup act from "the Drunk", I feel it takes away from the actual concert as well as there performance time, but at least his act is fairly short. All in all I thought it was a great show. Cash delivers a great performance on all the songs, not to mention Carl Perkins smokin the guitar. It's impossible to say a bad word about Mr. Roy Clark, his performance alone is worth it, incredible guitar and banjo work as always. Who wouldn't want to watch Ronstadt in her prime belt a few out, I'm pretty sure the prisoners didn't mind
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