Danny Cash and the Gallows doesn’t play just the classic Johnny Cash songs, such as “Ring of Fire” or “I Walk the Line." The band also plays some obscure hits.
“We like to play ‘You’re my Baby’, which was written by Cash but made famous by Roy Orbison,” lead singer and guitarist Dan Lillie said. “Cash wrote 100 albums. We play about 70 to 80 Cash songs now. But we have a lot more to go.”
Lillie, with his wife Angelee on keyboard and older brother Jason on bass, are a five-piece Johnny Cash tribute band. The other members include Ted Fuller on lead guitar and Kurt Sakumoto on drums.
The band has been playing together in packed venues for two years, but May 19 will be the Lillie brothers' hometown debut.
“We played on the outskirts but there is not a lot of venues in Gig Harbor,” Jason Lillie said. “And we need room. This show has the potential of becoming a high school reunion. We are looking forward to a packed house.”
The band is playing Saturday night at JP’s Hy Iu Hee Hee restaurant and are expecting to see a large crowd of familiar faces at the 21-and-older show.
“There is going to be a few surprises,” Jason Lillie said.
Dan Lillie said he has been playing music for over 30 years. He and his older brother graduated from Peninsula High School, along with Fuller and Sakumoto. Angelee Lillie is a Bellevue native. Dan started Danny Cash and the Gallows two years ago after encouragement from music friends and family.
“I was always told I had the Cash sound,” Dan Lillie said. “Soon I started learning a couple of songs and started playing.”
Angelee Lillie said she only started playing keyboard eight months ago.
“I had a piano growing up but I was a stubborn child and never took lessons,” she said. “But I have been learning quickly.”
The band has been touring from Seattle to Olympia and play up to four shows a week regularly. Jason and Dan Lillie say they have become popular with the local music scene because they play familiar songs with a fun twist.
“Other Cash tribute bands are traditional and technical,” Angelee Lillie said. “But Dan and us, we put our own funky twist to it.”
While listening to the music, the audience can pick up on the familiar tunes but with a rockabilly twist. The band plays shows for all ages and has found their fans span from ages 12 to 90.
“At a recent outdoor event we had a WWII veteran come up to us saying he loved hearing the old songs,” Angelee Lillie said. “It was very sweet. At another show we had a young girl come up and ask for a photo with the band.”
Jason Lillie said he hopes their show on Saturday will spur other Gig Harbor businesses to consider creating larger music venues so bands such as theirs can play on a regular basis.
“This collaboration has been a longtime coming,” Jason Lillie said. “It’s been cool to do this as a family.”
Listen to the band live
Who: Danny Cash and the Gallows
When: 9 p.m. Saturday, May 19.
Where: JP's Hy Iu Hee Hee restaurant and bar, 4309 Burnham Drive NW, Gig Harbor. Ages 21 and older only. The concert is free to attend.