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Johnny Cash

(February 26, 1932 - September 12, 2003)
Johnny Cash

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Growing up, he was called J.R., and when he enlisted in the Air Force it was as John R. He took the name Johnny when he started recording for Sun Records.
Much of his childhood was spent working in his family's cotton fields. He was a teenager when he started playing guitar and writing songs.
In October 1965, Cash was arrested upon returning from Mexico when US Customs agents searched his luggage and found hundreds of illegal pills. He was sentenced to 30 days in jail and fined $1,000.
In 1968, he married June Carter from the legendary Country music Carter Family. Cash credits her for saving his life, as she helped him break his drug habit.
Cash is a member of the Songwriters' Hall Of Fame, Country Music Hall Of Fame and the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. (thanks, Bertrand - Paris, France, for all above)
From 1969 to 1971, he hosted The Johnny Cash Show on ABC TV. Bob Dylan, Neil Young and Louis Armstrong all appeared as guests.
He died at age 71 due to complications from diabetes. (thanks, Melanie - Moncton, Canada)
The 2005 film Walk The Line is about Cash's life. He was portrayed in the movie by Joaquin Phoenix, who sang as Cash for the stage scenes.
He had his daughter Rosanne with his first wife, Vivian Liberto. Rosanne Cash became a prominent Country singer of her own, and had a crossover hit in 1981 with "Seven Year Ache." (thanks, Bertrand - Paris, France)
Barry Gibb from The Bee Gees bought the Tennessee house Cash lived in from 1968 until his death. In 2007, while the home was being renovated for Gibb, it caught fire and burned to the ground. (thanks, Julian - Oakland, AR)
Cash played many free concerts at prisons throughout his career. His first was on New Year's Day, 1960 when he played San Quentin prison in San Rafael, California. Merle Haggard, who was serving time for burglary, was in the audience. (thanks, Bertrand - Paris, France)
A requirement at Johnny Cash shows was an American flag on stage in full view of the audience.
During his time serving in the Air Force, Cash was employed as a code breaker based in Germany, intercepting Morse Code transmissions from Russia.

Get Songfacts for Johnny Cash

What '80s hit became a #1 Country hit when a Country singer recorded it a year later?
Get the answer in the Mighty Songfacts Trivia Quiz Archive, or take the Current Quiz.

Comments:

I recorded a tribute to Johnny Cash, it's called "Parent Trap" and it's done in the style of some of his songs like "A Boy Named Sue", etc. It's on my album Common Loons. http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/masongreen3
- Mason, Chanhassen, MN
Amazing artist that deservedly receives praise as one of the greatest if not the greatest country singer. Pretty cool song he did is The Wanderer. It can be found on The Essential Johnny Cash and (get this) U2's 1993 album Zooropa. Cash takes over lead vocals in this apocalyptic tale.
- David, Woburn, MA
I actually had the honor of meeting Mr. Cash in the early 90's. In tring to pay him a compliment, it sounded like an insult. I told him he looked at lot better in person than I would have thought. He gave me this kind of weird look like "What the hell?", but then he smiled and thanked me. I felt like a real moron. He was very nice.
- Minna, Joplin, MO
Thank you Johnny. R.I.P.
- Daniel, Nashville, TN
One of the greatest songs ever song by Cash was : highwayman
He did that together with Willie Nelson and some others..
My tip: look it up in youtube
- Larissa, apeldoorn, Netherlands
No comments on one of the greatest American Icons? I always wonder who told Johnny he could sing? His voice is so "not typical". I don't think he would have made it in many other genres but what he did he did amazingly. His songs completely embody an era - a time and a place that even if you have never been there - you can "go" there when you listen to Johnny Cash.
- Erin, portland, OR
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