THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
‘Johnny Cash … Every man could relate to him, no man could be him, and only one man could get inside his head – Robert Hilburn’ - BONO
People don’t just listen to Johnny Cash: they believe in him. But no one has told the Man in Black’s full story, until now.
In Johnny Cash: The Life, Robert Hilburn conveys the unvarnished truth about a musical icon, whose colourful career stretched from his days at Sun Records with Elvis Presley and Jerry Lee Lewis to his remarkable, brave and deeply moving ‘Hurt’ video, aged sixty-nine. As music critic for the Los Angeles Times, Hilburn knew Cash well throughout his life: he was the only music journalist at the legendary Folsom Prison concert in 1968, and he interviewed Cash and his wife June Carter for the final time just months before their deaths in 2003. Hilburn’s rich reporting shows the remarkable highs and deep lows that followed and haunted Cash in equal measure. A man of great faith and humbling addiction, Cash aimed for more than another hit for the jukebox; he wanted his music to lift people’s spirits.
Drawing upon his personal experience with Cash and a trove of never-before-seen material from the singer’s inner circle, Hilburn creates an utterly compelling, deeply human portrait of one of the most iconic figures in modern popular culture – not only a towering figure in country music, but also a seminal influence in rock, whose personal life was far more troubled, and whose musical and lyrical artistry much more profound, than even his most devoted fans ever realised.