The name Johnny Cash is as American as apple pie.
The songwriter and performer’s voice and look are stitched into the fabric of the country as much as the stars and stripes are.
And while he has a long catalog unto himself, he’s also been a featured artist on a number of tracks—some of which even the biggest music fans may not know about.
That’s why we’re here, to dive into six songs that feature Cash that music listeners are surely unaware of. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the songs.
1. “Redemption Day” with Sheryl Crow
Towards the end of his life, Cash wrote a new chapter to his legacy. It started with his American Recordings series, during which listeners got to hear his big hefty voice sound fragile and near-broken. In this song with Sheryl Crow, Cash demonstrates the same vocal touch. Check it out below and melt along with the notes.
2. “The Wanderer” with U2
Written by Bono and U2, this song is sung by Cash. It’s about a preacher going out on a personal, spiritual journey to look for what the world has to offer. According to legend, Bono and Cash worked on the song in Dublin and it was inspired by stories in the Bible. Check it out below.
3. “Redemption Song” with Joe Strummer
Performing the classic Bob Marley song, Cash collaborated with The Clash’s Joe Strummer. Both men, who’ve enjoyed decades in the music business, sound fragile and older, which just adds to the beauty of the song, which you can check out here below. Enjoy art without artifice. It’s pure melody, rhythm, and human performance.
4. “Father and Son” with Fiona Apple
In this unlikely pairing, two of the greatest artists of the 20th Century worked together, providing their unique singing voices for one track. The slow-paced song revives and inspires. It’s driven by an acoustic guitar and the blend of these artists singing together. The name of the song is apt given the age difference between Cash and Apple.
5. “Big River” with Bob Dylan
It’s no secret these two legendary songwriting men adored and admired each other. And here on this track, they exemplify why. The song is rockabilly and showcases Dylan at his smoothest singing, along with Cash’s big boulder of a voice. It makes you dance and makes you wish you were a fly on the wall even for just one conversation between the two icons.
Courtesy of The John R Cash Trust / Shorefire Media