Did it really happen? Yes, it did! And, we’re all much better for it!
The song was “Folsom Prison Blues” and Blocker helped Cash sing the song while he appeared on the singer’s variety show. That program was “The Johnny Cash Show.” They performed the song during the second episode of the show’s first season, according to IMDb.com. This episode aired in June of 1969.
Joining Johnny Cash and Dan Blocker for the performance was singer Joey Scarbury. Based on a clip from the episode, before Cash and the “Bonanza” star begin singing, Cash has a brief conversation with Scarbury. It appears that Scarbury has just given his own performance on “The Johnny Cash Show.”
“You did a beautiful job, Joey, they just love you,” Cash said.
“Thank you, Mr. Cash,” Scarbury responded. However, the Man in Black did not want Scarbury to be quite so formal.
“Mr. Cash – now that’s my daddy. I’m John, OK?” Cash said. “Alright,” a very nervous Scarbury then said as an entertain Dan Blocker watches.
Young Singer Joins Johnny Cash, ‘Bonanza’s’ Dan Blocker on ‘Folsom Prison Blues’
Johnny Cash then brought up “Folsom Prison Blues.” Apparently, Scarbury was almost ready to perform the iconic song.
“They tell me you’ve been doing a fine working up ‘Folsom Prison Blues,’ and playing it,” Cash said to Scarbury during the show.
“Well, I guess so, but I can’t pick the break too well,” Scarbury added.
“Well don’t worry about that ’cause I’m not too hot on that myself,” Cash then said. This drew a laugh from “Bonanza’s” Dan Blocker who had been standing by while the two musicians interacted. “What do you say, let’s try it, huh? Dan, will you join in and sing?”
“Oh, man. You’re gonna do it,” Blocker said with a laugh.
Next came the moment viewers – and you readers – were waiting for. The famous opening of “Folsom Prison Blues” is played and soon this unique trio are telling the story of a man who is locked up behind bars.
You can watch “Bonanza” star Dan Blocker, Johnny Cash, and Joey Scarbury sing “Folsom Prison Blues” below.
According to IMDb.com, Joey Scarbury’s most popular work came as part of the music department for the show “The Greatest American Hero.” Interestingly, Dan Blocker from “Bonanza” and Scarbury weren’t the only guests on this June 1969 episode of “The Johnny Cash Show.” The Statler Brothers and Gordon Lightfoot also appeared.