12 September-Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash was a singer, songwriter and actor who wrote the song ‘Forty Shades of Green’ whilst on a visit to Ireland in 1959 when he was 27 years old. Cash, who was a regular visitor to Ireland during his lifetime, was born was born in Arkansas, USA on February 26th 1932. He recorded over 1500 songs throughout his career and was playing the guitar and writing songs from the age of 12.

Cash joined the United States Air Force in 1950 at the age of 18 and was posted to Germany where he formed his first band. On being discharged from the Air Force in 1954 he married Vivian Liberto whom he had met when he was training for the Air Force. His first chart success came in 1955 with songs such as ‘Cry, Cry, Cry’ and ‘Folsom Prison Blues’. Folsom Prison Blues was written in 1953 when Cash was stationed in Germany. He had his first number 1 hit with ‘I Walk the Line’ which he wrote and recorded in 1956. It sold over 2 million copies.

Johnny Cash became a musical superstar with a heavy tour schedule on which the use of drugs and alcohol became a frequent occurrence. He is quoted as saying, ‘I took all the drugs there are to take, and I drank’. He was divorced by his wife in 1966. In 1968 Cash married June Carter, who had helped him to stop his drug taking habit. He had proposed to her while they were performing on stage in London, Ontario, Canada.

Throughout the 1970’s, 80’s and 90’s, despite health problems and surgery, Cash continued to write, record, and with June Carter, maintain a busy schedule. During his career he gave concerts in prisons such as Folsom, San Quentin and Österåker and was an activist for Native Americans. The winner of multiple awards his music ranged across several genres including country, rock and roll, folk and gospel. With his deep distinctive singing voice he came to be regarded as one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century. June Carter died in May 2003, four months before the death of Johnny Cash.

Johnny Cash (J.R. Cash) died at the age of 71 in the year 2003 On This Day.

Johnny Cash (& kitten) lock screen by Brett Jordan on 2012-05-10 11:28:03

 

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