USA, 1969, country

Johnny CashAt San Quentin

That moment when a song is so magical, so perfect, that it has to be played again immediately. And it doesn’t get stale. Cash takes a moment to make sure all the producers and TV channels clearly understand the “fuck you” he’s giving them, too. Brilliant. The only person who can outdo Johnny Cash is Johnny Cash, and he does only on At Folsom Prison. I remember reading the liner notes in my Johnny Cash boxed set booklet, and Cash describes the feeling in the room after singing “San Quentin” the second time through. The first time through it was a bunch of cheering, but the second time through, the inmates know the song and fall into a dark brooding mood. Cash says that the tension was so strong in the room that he could’ve told the prisoners to riot in that moment, and they would have.

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