Marshall Grant, founding bassist of Johnny Cash’s original band the Tennessee Two and the singer’s longtime road manager, died Aug. 7 in Jonesboro, Ark., after suffering an aneurysm. He was 83.
According to a report in the Nashville Tennessean, Grant, who lived in Hernando, Miss., was in Arkansas to play at the Johnny Cash Festival, a charity event to fund restoration of Cash’s childhood home in Dyess, Ark.
North Carolina-born Grant was working with Roy Cash as a mechanic at Memphis’ Automobile Sales Co. in July 1954 when he was introduced to Roy’s brother John, newly arrived home from Air Force duty in Germany.
Cash, Grant and another mechanic, Luther Perkins, were soon jamming at Grant’s home…
Marshall Grant, an original member of Johnny Cash’s Tennessee Two band and the “boom” in Cash’s famed “boom- chicka-boom” sound, died Sunday morning at St. Bernard’s Medical Center in Jonesboro, Ark., after an aneurysm.
Mr. Grant, 83, was an integral part of most of Cash’s most famous recordings, including “Ring of Fire,” “I Walk The Line,” “Sunday Morning Coming Down,” “Man in Black” and the entirety of Cash’s live albums recorded at Folsom and San Quentin prisons. He was a key component in Cash’s sound from 1954 to 1980 and one of Cash’s most trusted friends.
It was Mr. Grant who switched from guitar to bass so that Cash could stand front and center. It was Mr. Grant who served as road manager for a quarter-century, keeping Cash safe if not untroubled during Cash’s wild, pill-addled years in the 1960s and ’70s…