Hello, I’m Johnny Cash: The Man in Black Remembered: Chad Silber
On September 12 we lost a legend. Four months after his wife June Carter Cash was laid to rest, Johnny Cash, at age 71, said goodbye to this world and his millions of fans worldwide. The Man in Black’s musical career plays like the soundtrack of so many American lives. He was the voice of the downtrodden and struggling; an almost mythical persona, known to all and loved by millions. Mr. Cash recently received a MTV music award for his version of “Hurt”, a haunting ballad that probes into the decisions made over the course of his life. He has recorded over 1500 songs on 500 albums. The list of his accomplishments in the music industry is voluminous. With a successful career spanning more than 50 years, Johnny Cash has etched his name into the lore of musicians/writers whose works will be enjoyed and revered for years to come. As a celebrity, Johnny Cash felt it was his obligation to use his status to help others who weren’t so blessed. A lesson can be learned from this giving man. He often performed for prisoners at San Quentin and other facilities, US soldiers and American workers everywhere as well as starting numerous charities. The following are the lyrics to his song “Man in Black.” Well, you wonder why I always dress in black, Why you never see bright colors on my back, And why does my appearance seem to have a somber tone. Well, there’s a reason for the things that I have on. I wear the black for the poor and the beaten down, Livin’ in the hopeless, hungry side of town, I wear it for the prisoner who has long paid for his crime, But is there because he’s a victim of the times. I wear the black for those who never read, Or listened to the words that Jesus said, About the road to happiness through love and charity, Why, you’d think He’s talking straight to you and me. Well, we’re doin’ mighty fine, I do suppose, In our streak of lightnin’ cars and fancy clothes, But just so we’re reminded of the ones who are held back, Up front there ought ‘a be a Man In Black. I wear it for the sick and lonely old, For the reckless ones whose bad trip left them cold, I wear the black in mournin’ for the lives that could have been, Each week we lose a hundred fine young men. And, I wear it for the thousands who have died, Believen’ that the Lord was on their side, I wear it for another hundred thousand who have died, Believen’ that we all were on their side. Well, there’s things that never will be right I know, And things need changin’ everywhere you go, But ’til we start to make a move to make a few things right, You’ll never see me wear a suit of white. Ah, I’d love to wear a rainbow every day, And tell the world that everything’s OK, But I’ll try to carry off a little darkness on my back, ‘Till things are brighter, I’m the Man In Black.