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Johnny Cash – At Folsom Prison

January 13, 2012 by staff 

Johnny Cash – At Folsom Prison, On this day in 1968, Johnny Cash played a show, which was recorded for his forthcoming live album, at Folsom Prison, near Sacramento, California in front of 2,000 inmates. Gibson takes a look back:
Johnny Cash had his share of troubles and vices in his lifetime, but he never did prison time. Despite this, nobody in music history is more associated with the clink than the Man in Black. It’s interesting that Cash is much more tied to the struggles and frustrations of prison life than the legions of pop, rock and country music stars who have actually had to serve a sentence.

The legendary country singer first learned of prison life – particularly, life in Folsom State Prison – through the movies. He was a member of the U.S. Air Force Security Service in 1953, when his unit watched the film Inside the Walls of Folsom Prison. It was that movie that inspired Cash to write one of his early songs, “Folsom Prison Blues,” in which he imagined what a prisoner felt like. After signing with Sun Records, “Folsom Prison Blues” became Cash’s second single – a #1 country hit and a Top 40 pop hit in 1955.

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