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Old 09-12-2003, 05:46 AM   #1
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Johnny Cash dies at 71...

New York Johnny Cash, a towering figure in American music spanning country, rock and folk and known worldwide as The Man in Black, has died, according to hospital officials in Nashville, Tenn. He was 71.

"Johnny died due to complications from diabetes, which resulted in respiratory failure," said Mr. Cash's manager, Lou Robin, in a press release issued by Baptist Hospital in Nashville.

The release said Mr. Cash died at the hospital at 1 a.m. EDT.

He was released from Baptist on Wednesday where he had spent two weeks being treated for an unspecified stomach ailment.

"I hope that friends and fans of Johnny will pray for the Cash family to find comfort during this very difficult time," Mr. Robin said.

Mr. Cash had battled a disease of the nervous system, autonomic neuropathy, and pneumonia in recent years and was once diagnosed with a disease called Shy-Drager's syndrome, a diagnosis that was later deemed to be erroneous.

Dozens of hit records like Folsom Prison Blues, I Walk the Line, and Sunday Morning Coming Down defined Mr. Cash's persona: a haunted, dignified, resilient spokesman for the working man and downtrodden.

Mr. Cash's deeply lined face fit well with his unsteady voice, which was limited in range but used to great effect to sing about prisoners, heartaches, and tales of everyday life.

He wrote much of his own material, and was among the first to record the songs of Bob Dylan and Kris Kristofferson.

One Piece at a Time was about an assembly line worker who built a car out of parts stolen from his factory.

A Boy Named Sue was a comical story of a father who gives his son a girl's name to make him tough.

The Ballad of Ira Hayes told of the drunken death of an American Indian soldier who helped raised the American flag at Iwo Jima during World War II, but returned to harsh racism in America.

Mr. Cash said in his 1997 autobiography Cash that he tried to speak for "voices that were ignored or even suppressed in the entertainment media, not to mention the political and educational establishments."

Mr. Cash's career spanned generations, with each finding something of value in his simple records, many of which used his trademark "boom-chicka-boom" rhythm.

Mr. Cash was a peer of Elvis Presley when rock 'n' roll was born in Memphis in the 1950s, and he scored hits like "Cry! Cry! Cry!" during that era.

He had a longtime friendship and recorded with Bob Dylan, who has cited Mr. Cash as a major influence.

He won 11 Grammys most recently in 2003, when Give My Love To Rose earned him honours as best male country vocal performance and numerous Country Music Association awards.

He was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1980 and inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992.

His second wife, June Carter Cash, and daughter Roseanne Cash also were successful singers.

June Carter Cash, who co-wrote Mr. Cash's hit Ring of Fire and partnered with her husband in hits such as Jackson, died in May 2003.

The late 1960s and '70s were Mr. Cash's peak commercial years, and he was host of his own ABC variety show from 1969-71.

In later years, he was part of the Highwayman supergroup with Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson and Kristofferson.

In the 1990s, he found a new artistic life recording with rap and hard rock producer Rick Rubin on the label American Recordings.

And he was back on the charts in with the 2002 album American IV: the Man Comes Around.

He also wrote books including two autobiographies, and acted in films and television shows.

In his 1971 hit Man in Black, Mr. Cash said his black clothing symbolized the downtrodden people in the world.

Mr. Cash had been The Man in Black since he joined the Grand Ole Opry at age 25.

"Everybody was wearing rhinestones, all those sparkle clothes and cowboy boots," he said in 1986. "I decided to wear a black shirt and pants and see if I could get by with it. I did and I've worn black clothes ever since."

John R. Cash was born Feb. 26, 1932, in Kingsland, Ark., one of seven children.

When he was 12, his 14-year-old brother and hero, Jack, died after an accident while sawing oak trees into fence posts.

The tragedy had a lasting impact on Mr. Cash, and he later pointed to it as a possible reason his music was frequently melancholy.

He worked as a custodian and enlisted in the Air Force, learning guitar while stationed in Germany, before launching his music career after his 1954 discharge.

"All through the Air Force, I was so lonely for those three years," Mr. Cash told The Associated Press during a 1996 interview. "If I couldn't have sung all those old country songs, I don't think I could have made it."

Mr. Cash launched his career in Memphis, performing on radio station KWEM.

He auditioned with Sun Records, ultimately recording the single Hey Porter, which became a hit.

Sun Records also launched the careers of Presley, Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis and others.

Folsom Prison Blues went to No. 4 on the country charts in 1956, and featured Mr. Cash's most famous couplet: "I shot a man in Reno/ just to watch him die."

Mr. Cash recorded theme albums celebrating the railroads and the Old West, and decrying the mistreatment of American Indians.

Two of his most popular albums were recorded live at prisons.

Along the way he notched 14 No. 1 country music hits.

Because of Mr. Cash's frequent performances in prisons and his rowdy lifestyle early in his career, many people wrongly thought he had served prison time.

He never did, though he battled addictions to pills on and off throughout his life. He blamed fame for his vulnerability to drug addiction.

"When I was a kid, I always knew I'd sing on the radio someday. I never thought about fame until it started happening to me," he said in 1988. "Then it was hard to handle. That's why I turned to pills."

He credited June Carter Cash, whom he married in 1968, with helping him stay off drugs, though he had several relapses over the years and was treated at the Betty Ford Center in California in 1984.

June Carter Cash was the daughter of country music great Mother Maybelle Carter, and the mother of singer Carlene Carter.

Together, the couple had one child, John Carter Cash.

He is a musician and producer.

Singer Rosanne Cash is Johnny Cash's daughter from his first marriage, to Vivian Liberto.

Their other three children were Kathleen, Cindy and Tara.

They divorced in 1966.

In March 1998, Mr. Cash made headlines when his California-based record company, American Recordings, took out an advertisement in the music trade magazine Billboard.

The full-page ad celebrated Mr. Cash's 1998 Grammy award for best country album for Unchained.

The ad showed an enraged-looking Mr. Cash in his younger years making an obscene gesture to sarcastically illustrate his thanks to country radio stations and "the country music establishment in Nashville," which he felt had unfairly cast him aside.

Mr. Cash once credited his mother, Carrie Rivers Cash, with encouraging him to pursue a singing career.

"My mother told me to keep on singing, and that kept me working through the cotton fields. She said God has his hand on you. You'll be singing for the world someday."


I can't believe it

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Old 09-12-2003, 05:52 AM   #2
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o my god

the man lived a great life.

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Old 09-12-2003, 05:53 AM   #3
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Up front there oughta be a man in black.
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Old 09-12-2003, 05:57 AM   #4
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I hope he's found June and is resting in peace (in the valley).

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Old 09-12-2003, 06:09 AM   #5
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Rip Johnny Cash

I know this thread will probably get moved but it is u2 related so here goes !The original man in black and rebel (in the best possible way)died this morning pay your respects here!
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Old 09-12-2003, 06:14 AM   #6
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I just read that online too

Its very sad

Makes me worry about my sister who has diabetes - im always afraid she will develop something due to a complication of it
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Old 09-12-2003, 06:24 AM   #7
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Old 09-12-2003, 06:26 AM   #8
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Poor guy, at least he's with June now

RIP Johnny
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Old 09-12-2003, 06:43 AM   #9
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Locusts and honey ... not since John The Baptist has there been a voice like that crying in the wilderness. ... Every man knows he is a sissy compared to Johnny Cash.

-- Bono
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Old 09-12-2003, 06:46 AM   #10
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Old 09-12-2003, 07:08 AM   #11
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Old 09-12-2003, 07:50 AM   #12
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He's singing with June now.

RIP, Man in Black.
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Old 09-12-2003, 08:21 AM   #13
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May he be a Wanderer no more and finally find what he's been looking for.
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Old 09-12-2003, 08:41 AM   #14
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there wasn't anyone before him, and there will never be anyone like him again... rest in peace johnny
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Old 09-12-2003, 08:44 AM   #15
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"Nothing is as macho as Johnny Cash's voice. A real threat you will not find in a 22-year-old. You just won't. You can dress him up in leather pants, you can have him throw his TV out the hotel window. He can roar in front of all manner of white noise, but there's no real threat when you're a teenager, when you're in your 20s or when you're [in your] 30s. The real shit, or what they say in New Orleans, the other kind of shit, comes from the perspective of being in the trenches and having been around a while. All the blues guys had it. Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, B.B. King. Johnny Cash has that and the voice of authority for me."

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