A Johnny Cash birthday bash: Celebrating the man’s 80th birthday at the Elmdale

Johnny Cash would’ve turned 80 on February 26th, 2012 (Photo credit: Stephanie Schoobert)

Christine Northan (blog) is a local poetry enthusiast and volunteer. When she’s not studying to be a massage therapist, she enjoys all things creative that Ottawa has to offer. And long walks on the beach. Can’t forget that.

It was a chilly February 25th, but in no way did that stop The Elmdale Tavern from reaching capacity before 9 pm!

Hoards gathered to celebrate what would have been the Man in Black’s 80th birthday. I arrived with my gal pal (and photographer for the night, Stephanie Shoobert). We were uber grateful to be the last two let inside (otherwise I would have had nothing to write!)

Inside was warm and packed with all kinds of folk – and we all had one thing in common – our mutual love for the great Johnny Cash. The night was created and hosted by local talent and radio host Lefty McRighty, featuring a selection of Ottawa’s best country/folk singers doing their interpretations of Cash tunes. Much respect to Lefty’s band The Sinister Six (Ray Harris, Ian Cook, Steve Donnelly, John Cormier, Ernie Legend, Ryan Barwin) for backing musicians all night long!

The night wouldn’t have been complete without a good ol’ fashioned raffle for a Johnny Cash-themed guitar! Muchos gracias to sponsers Spaceman Music, Dave’s Drum Shop, Steamwhistle Pilsner and, of course, CHUO 89.1FM (who graciously handed out merchandise – I now have a shiny new button to add to my collection.)

Shoutouts to the talent (You name it, they played it!):

  • Maxim Cossette (The Sick Sick Sicks)
  • Huntley Slim
  • Uncle Sean & The Shifty Drifters
  • Rick Hayes
  • Jon Laurie-Beaumont
  • Patsy Clash (of Ninety Pounds of Ugly)
  • Chris Landry (The Train Jumpers)
  • Clark Lawlor (The Kingmakers)
  • Hank’s Hangover

Check out Lefty’s Roadhouse for all your alt-country needs at 10 pm on Thursday nights on CHUO! And for ALL the night’s photos, check out SAS studio!

Sounds like an amazing show, Christine. Anyone have a favourite Cash tune?