NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Johnny Cash’s legacy officially expanded Wednesday in downtown Nashville, as the doors opened to the Johnny Cash Kitchen & Saloon.
Members of the Cash and Carter family welcomed patrons into the kitchen & saloon, which recreates the warmth of Johnny and June’s home.
John Carter Cash, Tommy Cash, Joanne Cash, and Carlene Carter, were among those that christened the stage, singing songs like “Will the Circle be Unbroken.”
“I’m so overwhelmed about this venue, about this place, I almost don’t have the words to say, it is so Johnny it depicts his entire life,” Johnny’s sister Joanne Cash told News 2.
From the jailhouse bars on the stage downstairs to the feeling of redemption upstairs, depicting the many of facets of Johnny Cash’s life was Bill Miller’s mission.
“The upstairs we go in to sort of sin and redemption when you round that corner you feel like you are in the church and that’s the reaction we get because first thing you see is beautiful stained glass window and then you realize that each medallion of each of those stained glass windows that go all the way across that wall represent a different milestone of Johnny Cash’s life; starting with his childhood home, going through the milestones and ending with Johnny and June’s wedding rings and a cross and bible because that love endured to the very end, even when June died, Johnny’s love for her was undying,” Miller, founder of Icon Entertainment Group, explained.
The new spot sits next to the Johnny Cash Museum, which Miller opened less than six years ago and has earned the spot as one of the most visited places in downtown Nashville.
“Well over a million, probably two million people now have come through our museum next door, more than we could have ever dreamed. 500,000 a year and it’s just not enough. No matter how much we expand we are still out of space, so we thought why not give those fans an experience to come hear Johnny Cash music, to be immersed in Johnny Cash music, to eat really great food. You know you could spend a whole day between these two buildings and that’s a good thing,” said Miller.
Country soul food is at the heart of the new saloon, featuring the menu of Swett’s, a signature Music City meat and three.
“My mother and father loved fellowship, comradery, friendship. They had events at their home that were about celebration, about music, about life and to me this is an extension of my parents enduring legacy in a way that it just expands it naturally that it’s next door to the Johnny Cash museum and the food here also being my father’s favorite food in the world, it just makes sense,” Johnny’s son John Carter Cash told News 2.
Food is served until 8 p.m. at the new restaurant and then it’s a 21 and up bar.