Since September 2010, this blog has recorded the journey of this music junkie as I attempt to listen to all the music in my CD collection. CDs revisited in their entirety from start to finish - no skipping tracks, no shuffle. Compact Discs only - no vinyl, no tapes, no files.
Thursday, December 9, 2010
Johnny Cash - At Folsom Prison (1968)
Note: this 1999 re-release contains two bonus tracks.
Yes, I bought this CD after watching the 2005 Cash biopic, Walk the Line. What of it? It doesn't mater how I found it, I'm better for experiencing this music. People who blame violence and misogyny on rap music or heavy metal lyrics should hear these lyrics from the '60s. Controversial lyrics are nothing new. Interestingly, this CD does not bear the RIAA's music advisory label (maybe Tipper Gore was a Johnny Cash fan?). But just listen to songs like Folsom Prison Blues or Cocaine Blues and you'll see what I mean. Cash doesn't have the best voice in music, but he has the perfect voice for this music. In the liner notes, Cash calls the convicts "all brothers of mine" and you can hear it in these songs. Even the love songs have a rough edge of loneliness and heartache. I don't have many country albums, but I do have this classic. It's not something I listen to often; I have to be in just the right mood, otherwise it's just too depressing.
Update: In its 2020 list of The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, Rolling Stone ranked At Folsom Prison at #164 and in 2017, it was ranked at #58 on Pitchfork's list of the 200 Best Albums of the 1960s.
Peak on the US Billboard Top 200 chart: #13
Tracks: Folsom Prison Blues, Busted, Orange Blossom Special, Jackson, and I Got Stripes are highlights for me.
Personal Memory Associated with this CD: None