Johnny Cash: a True American Icon

1471 Words6 Pages
Every day of every person’s life is influenced by music in some way or another. Whether it be the clock radio alarm that wakes you up in the morning, the music in your car on your drive to school or work, hell maybe you’re even lucky enough to go see a band live in concert, but in one way or another you are influenced by music. These days more often than not, the music scene is polluted with mediocre one hit wonders who flame out in a matter of months. We find ourselves listening to things like “Gangnam Style” by The Korean artist Psy or one of Brittany Spears latest excuses for a song and often asking where the real music is. One man’s music has stood the test of time even ten years after his passing. That man is the Man in Black himself, Mr. Johnny Cash. In order to fully appreciate Cash’s music you should know a bit of his incredible life story that shaped his career. Johnny Cash was born February 26, 1932, as J.R. Cash, in Kingsland, Arkansas. His father Ray Cash, and mother Carrie Cash named him J.R. because they could not think of a name. When Johnny enlisted in the United States Air Force in 1950, they wouldn’t let him use just initials as a name so he adopted the name John. John’s early life had a very major role in shaping his music career providing him with inspiration for many of his hit songs. John and his family had a very rough life during The Great Depression. The depression Barton 2 era was especially hard on the Cash family causing Johnny and his siblings to work on the family farm from a very young age. They would sing songs to get through the long days and Johnny didn’t stop singing till the day he died. His mother noticed a talent in John so she got him singing lessons, after only three lessons the instructor told John to never take another lesson as his voice was very unique and powerful. But his early life was not without tragedy.
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