Friday, March 24, 8 p.m.
Raccoon Motel, 315 East Second Street, Davenport IA
Touring in support of their fall release Flowers for June, Jay Ernest and the Minneapolis-based musicians of Church of Cash bring their Johnny Cash tribute to Davenport's Raccoon Motel on March 24, performing from the legendary singer's expansive repertoire and the album's repertoire that boasts undersung hits such as “A Thing Called Love,” “Dark as a Dungeon,” and “(Ghost) Riders in the Sky.”
The award-winning Church of Cash is a premier Johnny Cash tribute-show band with the requisite attitude and chops, and its ensemble boasts Ernest on lead vocals and acoustic guitar; Jonathon TeBeest on drums, percussion, and background vocals; “Jumpin’” Jack Mansk on electric, baritone and acoustic guitars, and background vocals; and Tony Wirth on bass, upright bass, and background vocals. Since forming in 2009 in Honolulu, Hawaii, Church of Cash has steadily forged a reputation for excellence, and after relocating to Minneapolis a year later, the band made it clear early on that channeling Cash was anything but a vehicle to gain instant notoriety. Cash, choirs, and rock ‘n’ roll reign supreme, and when Jay Ernest steps in front of a microphone, he embodies the true artistic spirit of the man he reveres. “I want to be known as the best Johnny Cash tribute show in the world,” says Ernest. “We have the credibility, and we have four studio albums as Church of Cash. I grew up loving the sound of the choir and the booming voice of Johnny Cash. This is in my blood.”
The latest of those four studio albums is Flowers for June, which was released in October and features a spate of inspired but not-so-obvious Johnny Cash covers, including “Ballad of a Teenage Queen,” “Thing Called Love,” “One Piece at a Time,” and “One on the Right Is on the Left.” Recorded at Square Studio in Minnetrista, Minnesota, Flowers for June joins Church of Cash, Thank You Sir, and Christmas Songs in the Church of Cash catalog. Since the group's inception more than a decade ago, Ernest and his Church of Cash have toured the United States, Belgium, and the Netherlands, and along the way, they’ve amassed numerous accolades. In 2019, Church of Cash received “Best Tribute Act 2019” honors from the Midwest Country Music Organization, and two years later, Jay Ernest (and by extension the Church of Cash )was inducted to the Minnesota Music Hall of Fame. Beyond his tour engagements and recording with Church of Cash, Ernest and his friend Tom Pickard have also created an original musical-theatre-meets-concert event titled Folsom Prison Experience.
Church of Cash brings their Johnny Cash tribute to downtown Davenport on March 24, admission to the 8 p.m. concert is $15, and tickets are available by visiting TheRaccoonMotel.com.