On This Day in 1968 | Johnny Cash Recorded His Live Album at Folsom Prison

Talk about a jailhouse rock!

Dressed in his trademark black on January 13th, 1968, Johnny Cash performed in front of a crowd of inmates at Folsom State Prison. After the release of his 1955 song “Folsom Prison Blues,” Cash became increasingly interested in recording a live performance at a prison.

Enjoy these fun facts about this record!

  • Cash chose to record his live album at Folsom State Prison since they were the first prison to respond to his request.
  • Johnny Cash was inspired to write his legendary song “Folsom Prison Blues,” after watching the 1951 film, Inside the Walls of Folsom Prison.
  • Thanks to this performance, the Man in Black became the first artist to record a live album in a prison.
  • “Folsom Prison Blues” reached the #4 spot on the Billboard Country Western Best Sellers chart.
  • The Tennessee Three (Luther Perkins, Marshall Grant, and W. S. Holland) backed Cash during the sets. Former Sun label-mate, Carl Perkins, was also on stage and Perkins opened the show with his song, “Blue Suede Shoes.”

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