Relive The Time Bob Dylan And Joni Mitchell Performed On The Johnny Cash Show

Relive The Time Bob Dylan And Joni Mitchell Performed On The Johnny Cash Show | Society Of Rock Videos

via Bob Dylan/YouTube

A Great Start

The Johnny Cash Show debuted on June 7, 1969 replacing ABC’s Hollywood Palace variety program. And what better way to kick it off than by having Bob Dylan and Joni Mitchell as guests? The episode was filmed on May 1 at the Grand Ole Opry.

During the taping, Dylan brought his then-wife Sara and their son Jesse. It was Dylan’s first public appearance since January 1968 at the Woody Guthrie tribute concert. He performed “I Threw It All Away” and “Living the Blues.” Cash joined him for “Girl From the North Country” – a duet featured on Dylans’ “Nashville Skyline” album.

After his set concluded, Cash said: “It’s really fine to have a great man like Bob Dylan on the show.”

Dylan may have seemed reserved and aloof but he admitted that he was actually “scared to death.”

Aside from the folk rock icon, other artists on the bill included Cash’s wife June Carter, the Carter Family, Joni Mitchell, the Statler Brothers and a Cajun fiddler named Doug Kershaw.

Mitchell sang her 1969 classic hit “Both Sides, Now.”

According to the musical director Bill Walker, “Bob Dylan and Joni Mitchell were two of John’s favorites. He really liked the two of them — and they were really hot at that time. In those days, you had to appeal to the urban people in New York and Los Angeles, Chicago, places like that. You couldn’t just put on a straight country-type show. You had to have a little bit of a flavor about it that people in New York would recognize, because we were trying to win a whole new audience. Dylan had the audience already and so did Joni Mitchell to a point. ( So that was part of the reason that they were picked.”

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