A powerful portrait of a legendary musician by a legendary photographer
Carefully curated with full access to the Jim Marshall Archive, this powerful oversize volume offers the definitive view of Johnny Cash's prison concerts at Folsom in 1968 and San Quentin in 1969. Jim Marshall was the only official photographer present, and was granted unlimited access.
Backed by June Carter, Carl Perkins and the Tennessee Three, Cash performed two shows at Folsom. The resulting album was a hit in the United States, and reached number one on the country charts and the top 15 of the national album chart. Its popularity revitalized Cash's career and led to a follow-up album, At San Quentin, the following year. San Quentin became Cash's first album to hit number one on the pop charts and both it and its predecessor remain two of the biggest-selling live albums of all time.
From rehearsing with the band, to arriving off the bus outside the imposing prison walls, to shaking hands with prisoners and performing until sweat dripped down his forehead, Marshall captured the passion, authority and intimacy of Cash's legendary penitentiary performances. His "JC Flippin' the Bird at San Quentin Prison" has become one of the most iconic and most-copied photographs of the 20th century, a result of Marshall asking Cash to express what he thought about the prison authorities: "John, let's do a shot for the warden."
Johnny Cash was one of Jim Marshall's favorite subjects, something that is evident in his Folsom and San Quentin photographs. This body of work showcases some of the most arresting photographs of the country music star ever taken.
Every now and then, a song inspires a cultural conversation that ends up looking like a brawl. Merle Haggard's Okie from Muskogee, released in 1969, is a prime example of that important role of popular music. Okie immediately helped to frame an ongoing discussion about region and class, pride and politics, culture and counterculture. But the conversation around the song, useful as it was, drowned out the song itself, not to mention the other songs on the live album-named for Okie and performed in Muskogee-that Haggard has carefully chosen to frame what has turned out to be his most famous song. What are the internal clues for gleaning the intended meaning of Okie? What is the pay-off of the anti-fandom that Okie sparked (and continues to spark) in some quarters? How has the song come to be a shorthand for expressing all manner of anti-working class attitudes? What was Haggard's artistic path to that stage in Oklahoma, and how did he come to shape the industry so profoundly at the moment when urban country singers were playing a major role on the American social and political landscape?
Graced by more than 200 illustrations, many of them seldom seen and some never before published, this sparkling volume offers vivid portraits of the men and women who created country music, the artists whose lives and songs formed the rich tradition from which so many others have drawn inspiration. Included here are not only such major figures as Jimmie Rodgers, The Carter Family, Fiddlin' John Carson, Charlie Poole, and Gene Autry, who put country music on America's cultural map, but many fascinating lesser-known figures as well, such as Carson Robison, Otto Gray, Chris Bouchillon, Emry Arthur and dozens more, many of whose stories are told here for the first time. To map some of the winding, untraveled roads that connect today's music to its ancestors, Tony Russell draws upon new research and rare source material, such as contemporary newspaper reports and magazine articles, internet genealogy sites, and his own interviews with the musicians or their families. The result is a lively mix of colorful tales and anecdotes, priceless contemporary accounts of performances, illuminating social and historical context, and well-grounded critical judgment. The illustrations include artist photographs, record labels, song sheets, newspaper clippings, cartoons, and magazine covers, recreating the look and feel of the entire culture of country music. Each essay includes as well a playlist of recommended and currently available recordings for each artist. Finally, the paperback edition now features an extensive index.
Johnny Cash remains one of the most recognizable artists in the world. Starting in 1956, he released an album every year until his death in 2003. In addition to these albums, there were also some posthumous releases in the years after his death. From rockabilly to country, folk to comedy, gospel to classical, the prolific Cash touched them all. His hit singles crossed over from country to pop, as he transcended genres and became a superstar around the globe. Cash skyrocketed from the beginning, flying through the '60s until he was one of the country's biggest stars by the end of the decade. Following his own muse through the '70s, Cash slowly faded commercially until he nearly disappeared in the '80s. Instead of giving up, he made an incredible late-career run in the '90s that took him into the new millennium, along the way collaborating with various contemporary rock and pop artists. His offstage problems often overshadowed the music, and his addiction often takes center stage in the story, pushing the music off the page. But Johnny Cash FAQ celebrates the musical genius of Cash and takes a look at every album Cash released, the stories behind the hits, and how he sustained a fantastic nearly 50-year career.
The first major biography of the Carter family follows the musical pioneers who almost single-handedly established the sound and traditions that grew into folk, country, and bluegrass music--a style most recently popularized in the George Clooney hit movie O Brother, Where Art Thou? of photos.
In a brief and brilliant career that lasted barely seven years, Jimmie Rodgers reigned as one of America's first music superstars. From the summer of 1927, when he made his initial recordings with Ralph Peer in Bristol, Tennessee, to May 1933, when, fighting tuberculosis, he cut his last records in New York City, Rodgers created a string of hits that define American music. Blending white country, black blues, Tin Pan Alley song, traditional ballads and his signature yodels, he captured the spirit and sound of his generation while heralding the musical styles and genres that would prevail long after his death,
This book grows from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum's American Music Masters Series, which honored Rodgers in aweek of events focused on his life and legacy. With contributions from a range of scholars, critics, and musical artists, it offers new perspectives on Rodgers, his music, and his influence, bringing "America's Blue Yodeler" and his uniquely American gifts into fresh relief.