Overview TRACK LISTING 01. Where We'll Never Grow Old 02. I Shall Not Be Moved 03. I Am A Pilgrim 04. Do Lord 05. When The Roll Is Called Up Yonder 06. If We Never Meet Again This Side Of Heaven 07. I'll Fly Away 08. Where The Soul Of Man Never Dies 09. Let The Lower Lights Be Burning 10. When He Reached Down 11. In The Sweet By And By 12. I'm Bound For The Promised Land 13. In The Garden 14. Softly and Tenderly 15. Just As I Am
Record Label Lost Highway
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 5.55" Width: 4.97" Height: 0.54" Weight: 0.2 lbs.
Release Date Apr 20, 2004
Publisher CHORDANT ACNT# 3707
ISBN 1901008428 EAN 9781901008425 UPC 602498613337
What The Man in Black was meant to be Oct 14, 2006
Finally, Johnny Cash finds what he was meant to be. Just his guitar playing, his voice, and a great selection of songs make this a must have. Johnny was a legend and this is his album, what he wanted to do all of his life. Buy this it is wonderful.
Stark simplicity, sincerity and sacredness... Jul 31, 2006
The 15 songs selected by Johnny not that long before his death all came literally from his mom's favorite hymnal. That is the weakness of the effort, to me, because of a certain lack of variety in content. I agree also with an earlier reviewer who noted that Johnny's guitar work was too subdued here. (Perhaps in his illness, his pickin' suffered more than his vocalizing. While not as strong a voice as he showed on his 1993 American Recordings debut, it really is better than I expected.) Johnny does have some uptempo selections here, and they are the best on the disc. However, in his "Personal File" double-CD set recently released on Sony/Legacy, you get a whole disc of acoustic hymns and spirituals sung in Johnny's 1970's voice. That CD, overall, is much more compelling than this one. True fans will demand to own both, of course. In the "Personal File" effort, you also get a disc of Johnny singing traditional country songs, along with some self-penned tracks and a few 1970's era songs by other artists like Johnny Horton, John Prine and Carlene Carter. The cost of the two CD's of "Personal File" is just a tiny bit more than what you'll pay for "My Mother's Hymn Book" so I highly recommend making that purchase first. His religious disc from "Personal File" has hardly been out of my car CD player since I got it five or six weeks ago, and yet I am not a very religious person. They just grab you. So does "My Mother's Hymn Book" but not as powerfully.
Frankly, I expected more... Jun 13, 2006
I am a huge fan of hymns. And after watching "Walk the Line" and reading about Johnny Cash immediately thereafter, I am a huge fan of the Man in Black. And this album was a disappointment to me.
To be sure, there is something beautiful and pure about this recording. On a strictly emotional level, it is wonderful to hear this dying man, with such an excruciating life journey that had come to such a rich spiritual conclusion, singing the hymns of his youth. The authenticity in his voice is refreshing.
However, I fault this album on two levels. First, the balance between his voice and his guitar was askew, pushing the guitar so far in the background as to almost be irrelevant. I appreciate simplicity, but this album almost sounds a cappella at parts.
My other significant critique is Cash's voice at this point in his life. Of course, any man his age would have similar vocal limitations. I cannot fault him on a personal level. It just makes the album less appealing to the listener. Though his heart would have been at such a different place, I can only imagine how much better it would sound to have heard him sing these songs twenty or thirty years ago.
In any case, it's an album worth hearing. For spiritual reasons, I'm glad that I did. However, the musical problems will prevent it from becoming a regular part of my listening library.
The Pure Heart Of The Man In Black May 20, 2006
As with the rest of his "American" recordings, the Man In Black audibly comes across as the awe-inspiring grandfather figure with captivating stories to tell and lessons of wisdom to impart. This is the album the Man In Black himself stated he always wanted to create- a testament to the treasure of his heart. Simply do yourself a favor and purchase the entire "American" series.
A Parting Gift Dec 1, 2005
This collection of Cash's songs is absolutely excellent for the initiated and the uninitiated. "He Reached Down for Me" is a personal favorite. These are songs that nutured him through life and gave him the foundation of his faith. The voice is at times faltering and weak and yet here he is singing songs of joy and hope. These are old-time tunes and well-recognized so they may evoke memories in the listener as well. "In The Garden" was a favorite hymn of my own grandmother and was sung at her funeral when she died in '76 at 93 years old. That's history and tradition. Artists like Cash have been care-takers of American musical tradition. Here is a wonderful parting gift.