Listen to Brian Eno's beautiful cover of Johnny Cash's "Ring of Fire"

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Neato. The rhythm track sounds a lot like the track from the same album’s “The River.”


Calling it Johnny Cash’s in the headline while only giving a passing acknowledgement to June is a bit like referring to Beyoncé as “the wife of Jay-Z.”


Wrong Way Up is one of those albums that I didn’t appreciate back in the day, but over time has moved into the top tiers of my go-to list. Sooooo good.


Thank you for posting this. Made my morning. Sublime indeed.

It’s amazing how much the slowed-down Ring of Fire is similar to Long Black Veil.

Not identical to – similar to.

I can’t recommend that album more highly. Spinning Away in particular: it’s often my favorite song ever.


Songs are often attributed to the singers who popularized them while the writers get ignored. Think of Sinatra’s “My Way” and Madonna’s “Like a Virgin.” Even with a writer as legendary as Dylan, it’s more often called Hendrix’s “All along the Watchtower.”

The original:

There are some novel elements in Cash’s performance (e.g Mariachi), but I don’t think that they substantially informed Eno’s performance.

Bob Dylan liked what Hendrix did with his song:

" It overwhelmed me, really. He had such talent, he could find things inside a song and vigorously develop them. He found things that other people wouldn’t think of finding in there. He probably improved upon it by the spaces he was using. I took license with the song from his version, actually, and continue to do it to this day."

Legally, of course, it’s a matter of royalties-- this recording would have paid Carter/Kilgore-- and not Cash. As it should.

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Sarah Vowell did a great radio essay on This American Life about the incredible story of that song and how it played into the then-forbidden romance between Johnny Cash and June Carter.

The legend goes that June co-wrote the song while falling in love with Cash at a time when both were married, the hellfire being a reference to both the torment she felt about not being able to be with Johnny and the hellfire they’d both face if they left their families to be together. June gave the song to her sister Anita to perform, and Johnny heard Anita singing it without realizing it was about June falling in love with him. Even so he felt such an affinity for the song that he did his own cover version that became the legendary hit.


Sounded like a muzak version.

Doesn’t it just - for a moment I thought they’d linked to the wrong song.

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