New Johnny Cash exhibit featured at the Chandler Museum

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The Chandler Museum has a new exhibition featuring photographs of legendary singer, Johnny Cash. The exhibition is called “1968: The Folsom Redemption.” The collection of photographs and other memories was captured by two journalists who witnessed the historic Johnny Cash concert at Folsom Prison. “1968: A Folsom Redemption” will be on display through August 13. The Chandler Museum Manager, Jody Crago, joined Arizona Horizon to discuss the details of this exhibit.

“[It’s] 1968, and Johnny Cash wants to do a live album at Folsom Prison. He has had a rough time in his life at this time. He’s had marital issues, he’s had a bust for drug possession, he’s had run-ins with the law in his neighborhood and he has moved out of California, but he wanted to try to get a new concert and a new start,” Crago said.

According to Crago, Cash’s music connected with inmates because of his musical storytelling abilities.

“He connected with prisoners. He had run-ins with the law himself. He knew what it was like to be put in jail, to not know what your future was. He wanted to bring that energy to his music,” Crago said.

Cargo said during this time, Cash’s career was on a downward slide, and he wasn’t having number-one hits anymore. His records weren’t as successful as they were in the past. Cash pushed Capitol Records to do the live album when live records weren’t popular.

A photographer and a journalist were assigned to cover Cash’s Folsom concert. Crago said they were hesitant to cover Cash since he was considered “old news.” Photographs were taken as Cash arrived, prepared and performed the concert.

The exhibit consists of 32 photographs capturing that memorable day. In the gallery of the exhibit, museum attendees can listen to the live album.

“He (Cash) had a big impact on the music scene in Arizona, and some of the people from country music from Arizona played with Johnny Cash at that time,” Crago said.

Jody Crago, Manager of The Chandler Museum

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