The Singer Who Landed In Johnny Cash’s Yard With A Helicopter To Deliver His Songs
After artists reach a certain level of fame and commercial success in their careers, they tend to have more of an influence on the up-and-coming artists in the industry. Also, they acquire the power to change the trajectory of other musicians’ lives by introducing them to the music scene. If the wanna-be artists get the opportunity to interact with more prominent names and are good enough to impress them, they might get a chance to have a completely different life.
In Kris Kristofferson’s case, the janitor-turned-musician was fortunate enough to cross paths with Johnny Cash in the studio where he recorded his tracks. Although it was harder for someone in his position to reach an established singer and performer like Johnny Cash, he was determined to get his attention one way or another. His most significant and boldest move, which featured a helicopter landing in Cash’s yard, was what completely flipped Kris’ life upside down.
In an interview in 1988, Johnny Cash shared how he initially discovered Kris Kristofferson and introduced him to the industry. Although Kris was a janitor in the studio, he was persistent and ambitious and continued giving his songs to Cash’s wife, hoping he would get a chance to get recognized by the musician. However, one day, Kris got impatient, and his bold move changed his career trajectory.
“I discovered him, and so did a lot of other people about the same time,” said Cash before telling the story of how he came to know Kris and his ear for music. “Kris was a janitor at the recording studio where I worked, and he was trying to get songs for me to record. They told him if he bothered me when I was recording, they’d fire him, and he needed the job, whatever it was paying him, I don’t know, but Kris would bring his songs and slip them to my wife June you know put them in her purse, and I’d get them after I got home.”
Cash continued, “That’s how I got many of Kris’s songs, but then he became so impatient one day he landed a helicopter in my yard and brought me a tape of ‘Sunday Morning Coming Down.’ I thought, well, it’s time to really give this guy a listen, so I heard that song, and I did it on a network television show and talked about Kris, and he was on his way, then he went to Newport Folk Festival and stole my show, and he did great. I was proud of him.”
Even though Cash knew about Kris’s interest in making music, landing with a helicopter in his yard perfectly solidified any doubts the rocker had about whether the aspiring musician would take the journey seriously. Cash finally listened to the track ‘Sunday Morning Coming Down,’ which Kristofferson had brought, and decided to showcase his work on a TV show. That is how Kris Kristofferson got his big break in the music industry and made a life for himself as a musician. The pair even performed the track that changed Kris’ life together on stage.