Johnny Cash: The Fabulous Johnny Cash

Album review
Johnny Cash: The Fabulous Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash

The Fabulous Johnny Cash

Label: Impex
Media: LP
Genre: Rock/pop

As in its original 1959 release and expanded 2002 reissue, so in this new 180-gram vinyl edition by Impex Records: The Fabulous Johnny Cash consolidates the strengths that had catapulted the singer to regional stardom as a folk-country artist on Sam Phillips’s Sun label and, with its inclusion of two gospel numbers—Dorothy Love Coates’s upbeat “That’s Enough” and the reverent testimony of Jenny Lou Carson’s “Shepherd of My Heart”—sends a rebuke to Phillips, who believed gospel would be a commercial non-starter for Cash. Certain that such songs would work for him, Cash proved his point on this, his first Columbia album: it fit right in with his own budding mythology as part of a repertoire that includes his self-penned tall tales (the tragic western saga of “Don’t Take Your Guns to Town”), sentimental ballads about home and family (“Pickin’ Time”), and broken-hearted melodies in which nature mirrors his sorrow (“I Still Miss Someone”). Don Law’s spare, uncluttered production fills up a room on this vinyl reissue, with a striking balance between Cash’s authoritative presence and the nuanced, sensitive instrumental (Tennessee Two and others) and vocal (Jordanaires) support. Fabulous, indeed.

More Info

  • primary artist, Johnny Cash
  • LP

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