“Music Monday” People in the Johnny Cash video “God’s Gonna Cut You Down”

Wikipedia noted:

Johnny Cash recorded a version of “God’s Gonna Cut You Down” on American V: A Hundred Highways in 2003, with an arrangement quite different from most known gospel versions of the song.

A music video, directed by Tony Kaye,[1] was made for this version in late 2006. It featured a number of celebrities, including:

In order of appearance; Iggy Pop, Kanye West, Chris Martin, Kris Kristofferson, Patti Smith, Terrence Howard, Flea, Q-Tip, Adam Levine, Chris Rock, Justin Timberlake, Kate Moss, Sir Peter Blake, Sheryl Crow, Dennis Hopper, Woody Harrelson, Amy Lee, Tommy Lee, the Dixie Chicks, Mick Jones, Sharon Stone, Bono, Shelby Lynne, Anthony Kiedis, Travis Barker, Lisa Marie Presley, Kid Rock, Jay-Z, Keith Richards, Billy Gibbons, Corinne Bailey Rae, Johnny Depp, Graham Nash (holding photos of Johnny Cash), Brian Wilson.

It also briefly features archive footage of Cash himself. The video was shot entirely in black and white. Since its release, both the song and video have seen moderate airplay.

The video won the 2008 Grammy Award for Best Short Form Music Video.

The video was also covered by Rebel Son, Adding a little bit more upbeat sound to the song, Released on the “All my Demons” album.

The Johnny Cash version can also be heard in the following:

  • In the opening of the second mission of the video game Battlefield 3
  • In a 2011 commercial for Jeep Grand Cherokee
  • In the 2007 documentary:The Most Hated Family in America.
  • As bumper music for the Alex Jones radio show.
  • In promotional commercials for the hit CW series Supernatural.
  • In the trailer for the 2006 documentary Deliver Us from Evil.
  • As entrance music for UFC Fighters Spencer Fisher and Jason Lambert, as well as professional wrestlers Tyson Dux, Brodie Lee, and “The Southern States Outlaw” Michael Cross.
  • As the entrance song for left handed relief pitcher Joe Beimel of the Pittsburgh Pirates.
  • As the entrance song for Lance Berkman, right fielder of the St. Louis Cardinals.
  • As the entrance song for Arizona State pitcher Josh McAlister.
  • EastEnders used the recording in a 2008 promotional video for Max Branning‘s Judgement Day.
  • During the opening sequence and closing credits of David Ridgen‘s documentary Mississippi Cold Case made for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
  • In the release trailer of the game Splinter Cell: Conviction.[2]
  • In 2010, the recording was used in the opening titles sequence of the ITV (UK) series Father and Son.
  • As of June 16, 2010, a sample of the rhythm from this version is used as background music for a series of television commercials for the 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee; most notably the “Manifesto” advertisement.[3]
  • In a video entitled “The Death of Liverpool FC” intended to highlight the protest against the owners of the club at the time.[4]
  • Rapper RL sampled this version in his track, entitled “God’s Gonna Cut Us Down”, on his album “T.H.R.E.E.”
  • In a trailer for the Coen brothers‘s film True Grit.
  • In December 2010 in a trailer for ESPN‘s 30 for 30 film Pony Excess.
  • In March 2011 in the Being Human episode “Though the Heavens Fall,” as performed by Detroit Social Club.
  • Sampled by J-Clash on the track “Cut You Down” [5]
  • In a dramatic scene of Republic of Doyle, season 2, episode 9.
  • TIMBERLAKE’S BRAINSTORM: JOHNNY CASH VIDEO WITH KANYE, JIGGA, DEPP, OTHERS

    CLIP ALSO STARS BONO, CHRIS MARTIN, TERRENCE HOWARD, CHRIS ROCK, ADAM LEVINE, AMY LEE, TOMMY LEE.

    If Justin Timberlake adds any more titles to his résumé, we’re not going to be able to fit them all onto a single line. The singer/actor/dancer/producer/clothing designer has tacked video-treatment writer onto his long list of recent endeavors, courtesy of the moody new clip for the Johnny Cash song “God’s Gonna Cut You Down.”The concept for the all-star video came to Timberlake while he was taking a break from recording with producer Rick Rubin, who helmed Cash’s award-winning Americanalbum series and Timberlake’s “(Another Song) All Over Again.”

    “We were in the studio and we took a break to listen to the new Johnny Cash album [American V: A Hundred Highways], which was not yet released at that point,” Rubin said. “And when we got to that song, [Justin] said, ‘Stop!’ ”

    Timberlake then laid out a plan for a video to accompany the spare, moody song, which would feature a series of stars dressed in Cash’s signature black. “And he said, ‘I’m signing up to be the first one,’ ” Rubin said.

    Timberlake tops a list of 36 stars who appear in the clip, including Iggy Pop, Kanye West, Coldplay’s Chris Martin, actor Terrence Howard, Anthony Kiedis and Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Chris Rock, Maroon 5’s Adam Levine, Kate Moss, Sheryl Crow, Woody Harrelson, Amy Lee of Evanescence, Tommy Lee, the Dixie Chicks, Keith Richards, Bono, (+44)’s Travis Barker, Kid Rock, Jay-Z and Johnny Depp.

    “I had no idea yet how to market the album, which I’d just finished, since Johnny [Cash, who passed away in 2003] was not there and I wasn’t thinking about doing a video,” Rubin said (see “Johnny Cash Dead At 71”).

    Inspired by Timberlake’s brainstorm, Rubin called up acclaimed video director Mark Romanek, who helmed the award-winning clip for Cash’s cover of Nine Inch Nails’ “Hurt” (see “Johnny Cash Says Unlike Most Videos, ‘Hurt’ Wasn’t Too Painful”). Though Romanek loved the concept and added some ideas to it, he couldn’t sign on due to scheduling conflicts, so he suggested controversial director Tony Kaye (“American History X”). Kaye, who directed the time-tripping clip for the Chili Peppers’ “Dani California” (which is from an album also produced by Rubin), hasn’t directed many rock videos, but like many of the celebs in the shoot, he’s among the luminaries in Rubin’s thick address book of friends and professional acquaintances.

    “I got together with Tony — he loved Johnny and he’s really interested in the idea of music driving images,” Rubin said. Once they agreed on the concept, Rubin asked a few friends to make a list of the 10 coolest people on the planet. “At least five of the people in the video were on everyone’s list,” he said, “and Iggy was on a lot of lists, so it just felt right to open with him. I don’t know what that message is, but it just feels right.”

    Like the other stars, punk icon Pop is filmed wearing all black. The film’s lightning-fast, blink-and-you-might-miss-it series of quick-edit shots (many of which are close-ups of the stars’ faces) contrast with the slow tempo of the song.

    The video progresses through a series of quick mini-dramas, most of which were improvised, including Howard in a limo reading a Bible, Rock singing along with the lyrics, Timberlake staring at the camera, Depp standing on a balcony playing guitar, and Bono leaning on a graffiti-filled wall between angel’s wings and a halo while wearing a paper hat. The segments were filmed in Los Angeles, New York, London and (in Richards’ case) Amsterdam.

    Rubin said that for many of the artists in the clip — who also include Kris Kristofferson, Patti Smith, Q-Tip, Dennis Hopper, the Clash’s Mick Jones, Sharon Stone, Shelby Lynne, Lisa Marie Presley, ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons, Corinne Bailey Rae, Graham Nash and the Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson — their reactions capture reflective moments spurred by hearing the song for the first time. Lynne sheds tears in an intense closeup, and a serious-looking Kid Rock stomps and claps his hands along to the funereal beat. “Each person got to design their own moment,” Rubin said. “But Tony was looking more for the instant emotional impact than a pre-planned skit. Nobody was asked to lip-sync, so pretty much everything was spontaneous.”

    After a slide-show-like recap of all the famous faces, the clip ends with Rubin and actor Owen Wilson sitting somberly in the back of a limousine.

    We get Iggy and Bono, but what’s Wilson’s connection to the whole thing? “It just made sense that if I was honoring Johnny, I’d have a friend there with me,” Rubin said.

    He also said Kaye has directed a clip for the Cash tune “Help Me” that is not celebrity-driven, but is equally gripping and slated for release in the coming months.

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  • People in the Johnny Cash video “God’s Gonna Cut You Down”

    Wikipedia noted: Johnny Cash recorded a version of “God’s Gonna Cut You Down” on American V: A Hundred Highways in 2003, with an arrangement quite different from most known gospel versions of the song. A music video, directed by Tony Kaye,[1] was made for this version in late 2006. It featured a number of celebrities, […]

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