“The wrong man is singing this song, man– “croons Duran (Ross Golan) our death row troubadour at the opening of “The Wrong Man” now blistering the stage at the Skylight Theatre.
It's quite possibly one of the best "albums" you will hear all year, and if not that, then at least a gobsmacking display of songwriting chops that will have you scrambling for the lyrics sheet. If there were one.
The hitch is: "The Wrong Man" isn't an album.
The Wrong Man Puts a Hit Songwriter on Stage for a Dark Tale of Crime and Punishment
February 17, 2014
"I shot a man in Reno just to watch him die." This oft-quoted line from Johnny Cash's "Folsom Prison Blues" is the point of departure for The Wrong Man: An Underground Musical, composed and performed by Ross Golan, now playing at L.A.'s Skylight Theater.
Golan, who's penned hits for Nicki Minaj, Keith Urban, Justin Bieber, Cee Lo Green, Lady Antebellum, Demi Lovato and Skylar Grey, among other artists, tells the entire story in a song cycle, accompanied only by his own guitar—with visual assistance from a dancer and an accomplished, cinematic visual backdrop that deepens the production's film noir associations.
Skylight Theatre Company is premiering Ross Golan's song-cycle ballad The Wrong Man, which he performs on acoustic guitar, accompanied at times by a dancer (Jennifer Brasuell), representing the stripper he meets in Reno, and who unwittingly becomes the cause of his wrongful death-penalty sentence. This isn't a spoiler because the opening number, "The Wrong Man," lets us know he's in deep trouble. Golan croons the subsequent songs in a beautiful, lugubrious blend of rap, the blues and the poetical and treble vocal stylings of Loudon Wainwright.
Ross Golan's world premiere solo tuner is, as self-styled, "an underground musical about the justice system gone wrong." From the moment Golan emerges on stage, picking through a somber arpeggio chord sequence on his steel-string acoustic guitar, declaring,
The chilly air of Los Feliz Village unraveled the culture of music and theatre Sunday night, leading a group of people through a scene of artistic exploration they would not easily forget.
That’s what “The Wrong Man,” an underground musical directed by Lee Martino running until March 16th, did at Skylight Theatre.
By Bliss 01/29/2014
It's one of the most immortal and provocative lyrics in American music, at once bloodthirsty and clinically detached: "I shot a man in Reno just to watch him die." But what propelled Johnny Cash's "Folsom Prison Blues" protagonist to that moment?
By CHARLOTTE SPANGLER · Daily Trojan
Posted February 9, 2014 at 4:37 pm in Lifestyle
Sometimes all you need is a guitar and a bench, especially when your music is as good as Ross Golan's in the world premiere of The Wrong Man. Aided by projections and a dancing woman, the lead actor mostly sat and sang but offered a compelling performance. More of a concert with a story than anything else, the audience quickly learned that that was all they needed. The show is running at the Skylight Theater through March 16.