Reconciliationist viewpoint.Johnny Cash was a songwriter and singer, not a historian.Gotta tell you this is not one of his better ones from the standpoint of good music, even if it had different lyrics.
No, he's not a historian. But his song represents a strand of what people consider history - and thus my interest. And I agree, musically speaking - this is not Johnny's best effort.
If you want a real treat, watch him play John Brown in "North and South." It's one of the most incredible casting decisions of all time.
There's nothing wrong with an artist, especially a music artist, trying to expand his audience but Johnny Cash had an annoying habit of latching on to whatever musical style was taking place at the time. In the 1960s he ingratiated himself with the Folk/Protest Movement and by the 1990s he was hanging out at the Viper Room during the grunge movement. I suspect this fits into that mold.
In the 90s, I lived a few doors down from the Viper Room on Larrabee in West Hollywood. I wish I had run into him there. That would have been cool! Thanks for the comment :)
Keith, must have been something to live there at that moment in time.What is weird in New York s walking past where CBGB used to be and seeing how the neighborhood has changed. Unlike some I wasn't sad to see it go because I though it represented a particular moment in NYC history (1970s and 80s). By the 2000s it had become anachronistic.
I heard the old owner was planning to open a CBGBs is Vegas. Talk about anachronisms!
Indeed he was planning a Vegas satellite. CBGB had reached the institutionalized stage. It might note be there any more (haven't been down there in a while now) there is/was also a store on St Marks Place in the Village selling ghastly CBGB tshosckes.
Well, here in LA, you can't walk 100 yards without seeing someone in a CBGB & OMFUG t-shirt. I hope he got a piece of the action.
The song was actually written by Hal Bynum, who also wrote "Lucille" for kenny Rogers. I don't know why Cash felt he had to muddle the poignancy of the song by walking back its tribute to Southern heritage. It does smack of wanting to have it both ways.
And I now have to walk it back. Mac Vickery and Bobby Borchers wrote it, and Borchers released it on a single in 1975.