Dylan, Cash, and The Nashville Cats: Johnny Cash

Cash

Johnny Cash's friendship with Bob Dylan grew out of shared musical roots and mutual admiration. After the 1964 Newport Folk Festival, at which both artists performed, Cash gave Dylan a treasured Martin guitar as a symbol of respect. As Dylan went on to record and earn accolades for his country-influenced Nashville albums in the mid-1960s, Cash's career rose to new prominence, leading to production of The Johnny Cash Show in 1969. The show quickly garnered attention for the quality and scope of its musical offerings. Among the show's first guests was Dylan,  performing the song he had recently recorded with Cash for Nashville Skyline, "Girl from the North Country."

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The Johnny Cash Show's success grew out of its varied and intimate performances. Johnny Cash's live recording of "Sunday Morning Coming Down," performed on the show against the advice of ABC executives, earned him a CMA Song of the Year award and a number-one hit.

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Among the performers who broke through to national attention on The Johnny Cash Show was Linda Ronstadt, pictured here with Cash singing "I Never Will Marry" on the show's third episode.

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Cash premiered his trademark song, "Man In Black," on a special episode of the Johnny Cash Show at Vanderbilt University. The song proved that country could remain rooted in its traditions while also keeping up with the politically dynamic times.

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