“It’s a great feeling,” she explains. “It feels like our things are safe, they’re preserved. I’m incredibly proud of that and grateful to them. They are a world-class museum. They’ve taken the time to collect these things and take exquisite care of them and educate people. The Dylan-Cash exhibit is phenomenal. A lot of people don’t know about the Nashville Cats and the music that was created around that time in Nashville. They should know; it was an important time and an important part of American history.”
While the legacy that artists such as Cash, Harris and Williams have established for future generations, especially for women in the music business, is more contemporary, Cash saw participating in the artist-in-residency as a chance to seize on something that is not likely to be duplicated – and certainly never to be equaled – any time soon.
“Life is short. This may be the only opportunity to create this space for the three of us to do it,” she acknowledges. “That’s precious. I don’t think it will ever happen again. If it does, it’ll be a boon. But it won’t happen like that again.”
The collaboration proved especially moving for Williams, who at one point during the show began to fight back tears. Harris explained that just as Williams had recently lost her father, she, too, has been grieving, with the recent death of her mother.
“We all walked off stage and we all said that was one of the most moving shows any of us has ever done,” Cash explains.
Although Cash has yet to begin work on a follow-up to The River and the Thread, she did just re-sign with the label that issued the album in 2014, Blue Note Records. In spite of staying incredibly busy, she acknowledges that she and husband/producer John Leventhal didn’t let the LP’s huge success pass by unnoticed.
“I really did consciously try to take it all in because that doesn’t come around again,” she says. “That was a really, really special thing for John and me. I wanted to feel it. I wanted to enjoy it and I did. We were doing a lot of shows and a lot of other things were going on, so it’s not like I sat around and reveled in it for days. But I do still think back on it and go, ‘This is the year that happened. This is a great, great year for me.'”
Currently, Cash and Leventhal are writing the music for a play, although she’s keeping mum on details for now.
“We’re just in the early stages of that, meeting with the director and the book writer,” she says. “They haven’t announced it yet. I also wrote three songs for True Detective this season and John has just finished producing an album on soul singer William Bell.”
Cash takes the stage for the third and final artist-in-residence performance at the museum on Thursday, September 24th, sharing the spotlight with her husband and giving the already sold-out crowd its first-ever opportunity to see a full Nashville concert by the duo, who have been performing together for the past 20 years.