When news happens get involved. Send your pictures, views and video to us by text and email
Weymouth musician set to make it big in America with Johnny Cash tribute act
A WEYMOUTH musician who has waited more than 30 years to be discovered is set to make it big in America.
Kevin Lovatt has been snapped up by a promoter to take his Johnny Cash tribute act around the US.
Kevin will turn 50 while he is touring for two months in North America performing as the ‘Man in Black’.
He has flown to Dallas to play a show on February 2 and will go on a theatre audition tour of Branson, Missouri – which is known as ‘the live entertainment capital of the world’.
Kevin, whose act is called Virtually Cash, was signed up by talent agency Music City Attractions after auditioning in Nashville, days after getting married at Elvis Presley’s former home in Memphis in August last year.
The Westham resident said he jumped at the chance to take his act Stateside.
“I don’t think this has sunk in yet.
“I’m coming up to an age where if I’m going to do something like this than I need to do it now.
“I’ve been trying to get somewhere for 30 years now. That’s a long time.
“I’ve had a lot of side jobs here and there but it’s always been the music where I’ve been trying to make a go of it.
“It’s either persistence or stupidity,” he said.
Kevin said he was surprised that an Englishman is required to perform as one of America’s most famous sons.
“The Americans seem to like the fact that I’m English.
“They seemed surprised after hearing me talk after singing and for someone to get up and talk in an English accent after sounding like Johnny Cash, I suppose it’s a selling point.”
Aged 17, Kevin first performed in a Rockabilly band and moved to Swindon, where he carried on performing throughout the 1980s.
“I’ve always loved 50s music and was always a big fan of Elvis; even from a young age I’ve always loved that style so it’s been a natural progression performing as Johnny Cash.
“Everyone said I sounded like him, we both have a bass baritone voice range,” he said.
Kevin, dad-of-two and stepfather-of-three, said he has already had reasonable success in the UK with his act.
“I’ve always been amazed by how much young people love it.
“People in their teens, in their twenties, they all seem to get into it.
The success Kevin has experienced to date has come completely unexpectedly, he said.
“In 2011 I did a cover of God’s Gonna Cut You Down which got to number 23 in the UK country music downloads on iTunes after it was used on the trailer of the film True Grit.
“I had no idea what was happening and couldn’t understand why it was getting 5,000 downloads, then I found out it had been used on the trailer.”
Accompanying Kevin on the tour is his wife Kathleen, 34, and his daughter Kathy, 23.
To see videos of Kevin performing as Johnny Cash and updates on the tour, go to thejohnnycashtribute. com.