I've always found Johnny Cash to be an interesting guy, and over years I have found a growing appreciation for his music. What was most fascinating was that Cash had been around since the mid-50s, and this is the first time he is featured on the list with his live album at a prison. This is actually his 27th album release! There was a prison that Cash aspired to perform in, and that was Folsom Prison. In 1968 the idea came together resulting in Johnny Cash At Folsom Prison. I think Cash's rough past somehow put him into relation to the rough lives of the people he probably perceived in prison. While listening to the songs you truly feel like he's capturing the prison life.
Perhaps, I was already biased coming into this, but I knew that I would love Johnny Cash. His live recording sounds as good anything straight from the studio. "Folsom Prison Blues" sets up the whole tone of the album brilliantly, and you can tell he has probably been waiting to perform this song for this crowd for forever. Another one that stood out to me was "The Wall". It's a short song, but it's as strong as it's lyrics. The fact that Cash adds in his own little touches throughout this album livens it up. It's like he's having a conversation about his own songs as if he is singing them for the first time. Besides all these really great things, Cash's voice flows so well. It's an instrument on it's own. I also have one of Cash's albums on vinyl, though sadly not this one.
Rating: 5 out of 5.