Southern rock band The Steel Woods used a famous image of Johnny Cash from his 1974 studio album Ragged Old Flag in an Instagram post announcing the group's refusal to play shows at venues that require concert-goers to show poof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID test for entry. In the process, they caught the ire of Cash's daughter, Rosanne Cash.
"We are an American band with American values," read the band's statement. "We aim to create music that is healing and play shows for all who want to attend. We believe in an individual's right to choose what they want to put into their body and that no one should be forced to do anything for their own good in order to go about their lives. The recent news that AEG and Live Nation venues - and specifically our show in St Louis on 11/5 - will require vaccination or proof of negative test effective beginning of October is not something that we fully support or are willing to comply with."
After Rolling Stone shared its article about The Steel Woods' post on Twitter, Rosanne reacted negatively to the band's use of her father's image.
"THEIR statement, not my dad's from beyond the grave. This is an irresponsible and thoughtless misuse of the image and supposed beliefs of someone who cannot offer his own opinion," she wrote. "Please remove his picture from your press release. I hope you all #getvaxxed."
The group has since removed the image of Cash while doubling down on its original post.
"We are reposting our message and putting our faces out front, and respecting the legacy of Johnny Cash," they wrote. "This is OUR statement that we stand behind. Liberty and Freedom for all."
Wes Bayliss co-founded The Steel Woods in 2016 with the late Jason "Rowdy" Cope. The group's third studio album, All of Your Stones, was released earlier this year.