I suspect I am the last one to know this. Without access to cable tv and an internet connection too slow to try downloading I did not see the music video for “Hurt” until a few days ago.
There were threads about the video on all of the major message boards I post at. Everyone was calling it a masterpiece (except for a mall metal kid or two who don’t understand). I wanted to see it.
It wasn’t until I was at Circuit City cd shopping. They have a video loop that they use for advertisement purposes. It plays the current trend of music videos and movies. There were a few rap and pop punk videos. Then an advertisement for the new Jonah Veggietales movie. Then, as I was looking for The Velvet Underground in the music department, they started playing Hurt.
I didn’t even realize it until I turned around and saw Johnny Cash’s tortured face singing. His brittle fingers on the piano. His scratchy voice echoing. I stood. My eyes transfixed on the television screen. The video weaved touching video clips of Cash and his wife. Of old video clips from the past. Of destruction. Then the most powerful image to grace any screen, a shot of Cash pooring alchohol out of a cup, his hand shaking and voice crackling. It ended, Johnny’s fingers caressing the piano lid in silence.
I knew what cd I wanted to buy now. I rushed to the country shelves. Found the area for Johnny Cash and started flipping through his cds. “Live at Folsom Prision” “Live at Madison Square Garden” “American III” “The Essential 20 Cash Hits”, and on and on. Ironically, they did not have “American IV: The Man Comes Around”.
No matter. Barnes and Noble is next door. They carry everything. Albiet at a little higher price. I braved the cold weather and went over to Barnes and Noble. They had less Cash cds than Circuit City, but that’s no matter because they would have the most recent one.
Or maybe not. They did not carry it. In frustration I asked the clerk to look it up for me. There were two listings for the cd. One was the normal release. The other featured a bonus DVD. I furiously thought to myself, “Ah! I’ll bet the DVD release has the video for Hurt on it!”
Instead of speacial ordering it from Barnes and Noble and waiting 2 weeks for it to come in, I looked at the time and figured I’d give our local mall a chance. There are several music stores in the mall, FYE and Sam Goody. FYE had it, but they didn’t have the version with the bonus DVD. I practically flew into Sam Goody and into the country section. Low and behold, they had it. I was elated and walked on clouds to the cash register. Unfortunately, the cloud dissolved and I dropped hard to real life when I realized I left my checkbook at home.
40 minutes before the mall closes. It takes 15 minutes to drive home and 15 to drive back on a normal day. So, assuming I’m not ambushed at home, it should be no problem to get back in time. Actually, I made it home and back in about 20 minutes. I was speeding the whole way.
I was left breathless when I was finally able to watch the entire thing on my computer. It was a top notch production. Even more amazing is realizing that “Hurt” is a cover song. Not one Cash actually wrote. For him to be able to put that much emotion and drive into a song like that is mindboggling.
In fact, the whole “American IV: The Man Comes Around” cd is fantastic. The only song that I down right don’t like is “Personal Jesus”, another cover song. And the main reason I don’t like it is that I haven’t heard the origional Depeche Mode version, only another (and much much worse) cover version from Rackets and Drapes. The Rackets and Drapes is a shock metal band (ala Marilyn Manson) and the switch from shock (bad) metal to accoustic country just doesn’t sound right to me. (However, this is my fault for having heard the Rackets and Drapes version in the first place.)
The rest of the cd is right on. So if you’re looking to get the cd, be sure and try to find the version that comes with the DVD. You won’t be dissapointed.