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American VI: Ain't No Grave

Johnny Cash Audio CD
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
Price: 19.17 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Beginning his career as an outlaw to the Nashville establishment, Johnny Cash has come to define country music over the last 40 years. At first, his unique mix of hillbilly music with gospel and blues made him a perfect fit at Sam Phillips' Sun records, where he recorded such classics as "Folsom Prison Blues" and "I Walk The Line." From there, Johnny signed with ... Read more in Amazon's Johnny Cash Store

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American VI: Ain't No Grave + American V: A Hundred Highways + American Recordings
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Product details

  • Audio CD (22 Feb 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Mercury
  • ASIN: B0035RQK2C
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 40,660 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Ain't No Grave
2. Redemption Day
3. For The Good Times
4. I Corinthians 15:55
5. Can't Help But Wonder Where I'm Bound
6. Satisfied Mind
7. I Don't Hurt Anymore
8. Cool Water
9. Last Night I Had The Strangest Dream
10. Aloha Oe

Product Description

BBC Review

Johnny Cash’s American Recordings albums, recorded during the last decade of his life, carefully stewarded by Rick Rubin, are a monumental accomplishment ­– monumental enough, indeed, to stand as the monument that their incalculably influential creator deserves.

The quantity of the American Recordings matched the quality: four albums proper in the series released while Cash was alive, four further discs of out-takes and off-cuts collected in the Unearthed box set released immediately after Cash’s death in 2003, and a fifth, posthumous addition, American V: A Hundred Highways, recorded immediately before Cash died, released in 2006. The last of these was ­– though brilliant – formidably sombre even by Cash’s standards, unmistakably the sound of a dying man preparing to settle accounts with his maker. It is ­– or, at least, was – difficult to imagine what could possibly be left in the locker.

On the evidence of Ain’t No Grave, regrettable though it is to report, not all that much. American VI is very much a companion volume to American V: acoustic, downbeat, almost wholly devoid of percussion, Cash’s voice a wracked, whispery drawl, every note an effort. This is no problem in itself ­ and was no problem on A Hundred Highways, on which such sturdy material as Bruce Springsteen’s Further on Up the Road, Ian Tyson’s Four Strong Winds and Hank Williams’ On the Evening Train cohered into a chilling, dignified statement of satisfied resignation at the conclusion of a life well lived.

Ain’t No Grave, by comparison, feels a sweeping up of scraps, a collation of tracks which were, to judge by their generally similar lyrical preoccupations, considered for A Hundred Highways but found wanting. Some were unlucky: it would have been a particular shame if these versions of Kris Kristofferson’s For the Good Times and Tom Paxton’s Where I’m Bound had languished unheard. Others are more fortunate than they deserve to be: not even Cash can get more than knee-deep in Sheryl Crow’s Redemption Day. --Andrew Mueller

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CD Description

American VI: Ain't No Grave, is the sixth and final installment of Johnny Cash's critically-acclaimed American Recordings album series, and as with the previous five albums, American VI was produced by Rick Rubin. The songs on are drawn from all over the musical landscape and from various eras, and include Sheryl Crow's moving "Redemption Day", Kris Kristofferson's "For The Good Times", "Can't Help But Wonder Where I'm Bound" by Tom Paxton, Bob Nolan's "Cool Water," and the never before heard Cash original, "I Corinthians: 15:55", written over the last three years of his life.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not As Good 4 April 2010
Format:Audio CD
Although this is enjoyable, you can tell that it must have been recordings from very near his time of death.
It seems to be just a 'put together' album and does not seem as powerful as the previous American Recordings.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The final record? 7 April 2010
Format:Audio CD
A sticker on the cover states this is Johnny Cash last studio album. Let's hope it is. Of all posthumously released albums this is the weakest. There are not real suprises on it and the production is boring. It does not add anything to the great catalogue Cash build up in his life. Let's listen to all those great records and enjoy it.
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98 of 114 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Last Testament of Johnny Cash 26 Jan 2010
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This is the very final installment of the Johnny Cash/Rick Rubin years and its going out on top. Whilst other artists would probably be scraping the barrel by this point, this set sees many of the tracks Johnny recorded in the time leading up to his death, and similar to the last few CDs in the series, they are poignant as well as special.

Johnny has been quoted as saying that the work he was doing with Rubin was the only thing keeping going after June sadly passed away and you can almost feel he's nearing the end as the songs see him looking back on his life and dealing with the difficult subject of salvation, faith and friendship.

This really is a wide range of songs that includes covers of Kris Kristofferson's 'For The Good Times'and'Redemption Day' by Sheryl Crowe, as well as one of the last songs he wrote 'First Corinthians', and its quite ironic that the set finishes with a song called 'Ain't No Grave'.

The Rubin years have really proved what a great talent Johnny was and that he can't be pigeon holed as simply a country musician, and this final set, almost 50 years on from his first recordings, is a great tribute to one of the great artists of popular music.
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24 of 28 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Was it really, really worth that long wait ?? 24 Feb 2010
Format:Audio CD
Nearly seven years have passed since Johnny left us and nearly 4 since American 5 came out, 4 reviewers have preceded me and gave 5 stars to this latest and probably last CD in the series,
With all due respect, and Johnny Cash deserves a lot of our respect, I can only give this three stars. Yes this is tastefully done. No it is not all doom and gloom. Perhaps we simply expected too much.
Somehow it seems as if Rick Rubin was not as much involved in this latest project as he was in the preceding 5 CDs and in the "Unearthed" project.
Johnny, even in the year before his death was of course incapable of performing badly, but I doubt whether the man himself would have allowed tracks such as Cool Water and Aloha Oe to see the light of day. They are okay but simply not good enough.
I am not sorry I bought this, of course not, but to anybody starting on a path of discovery on the Johnny Cash's oeuvre, I'd say buy American 4, buy Unearthed and remember the Man in Black as he was at his best.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Victor HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Towards the end of his life, Johnny Cash made a series of great albums with producer Rick Rubin, culminating in `American IV, The Man Comes Around', the last album released in his lifetime. It was a strong run of albums giving him critical and commercial success again.

Cash had a strong work ethic, and there were many many songs left unreleased in the vaults. `Unearthed', released shortly after his death allowed us to hear the many finished tracks that for one reason or another hadn't been on previous releases. Cash was actually working on a new album when he died, and that was completed by Rick Rubin and released as American V, Hundred Highways. This album is a companion piece to that, and takes the rest of the material left in the vault with an added backing from Rick Rubin.

And that is where the problem with this album lies. It is material that was deemed unworthy of release previously, and some of it is a bit weak. There is almost a feeling of cashing in and milking the Johnny Cash legend for all it's worth by American. However, there is still a lot of good stuff here that was worthy of release, especially Cash's take on `For the Good Times'. His frail voice lends Kristofferson's lyrics an added pathos that really lifts the song to new heights.

In all a good album, and an interesting coda to Cash's career. I am having to dock a star for the feeling of barrel scraping though.
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31 of 37 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars In my world, this didn't happen 16 April 2010
By seun
Format:Audio CD
As much as it pains me to say it, American 6 should not have been released. Johnny Cash made some of the most honest and unpretentious music of his career with the American albums. He also made what amount to forgettable B-sides, and these B-sides have been thrown together with very little care by people who are either doing it purely for the money or because they think American 5 was not a superb end to a classic series.

This is a weak collection with only the title track and a Sheryl Crow cover showing any promise. Of course, Johnny Cash was extremely ill when recording these songs but even so, they're a poor representation of the man's power and talent. It would have been far better and more respectful to do him the honour of leaving American 5 as what it was meant to be - his final recordings. This release should not have happened. Stick to the first five and let's pretend the music industry hasn't once again proved what a money-hungry machine it is.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Close to tears
Having been a Johnny Cash fan all my life these final recordings are so poignant. The songs are sad but hearing his voice as he is reaching the end of his life especially him... Read more
Published 21 months ago by Boyz
5.0 out of 5 stars Another from the best
What can one say that hasn't been said already about this fantastic artist.this completes my CD collection of all of his works and it is one that would complement any collection of... Read more
Published on 16 Mar 2012 by Fly Fisher
3.0 out of 5 stars Falls well short of American 5, but still good
I have bought almost all of the Rick Rubin - Johnny Cash albums over the last couple of years and thought American 5 (A Hundred Highways) was truly excellent. Read more
Published on 10 Oct 2010 by Mr Baker
5.0 out of 5 stars American VI - Johnny Cash
I bought this for my dad who has been a Johnny Cash fan for years. After listening to it my dad advised it was a great cd particularly for those ardent fans of the Man In Black. Read more
Published on 9 April 2010 by P. Brown
5.0 out of 5 stars CD given as a Birthday Gift
Jonny Cash - American V1: Ain't No Grave.

Sorry I cannot comment on this CD because I haven't heard it, it was given to a Friend as part of a Birthday Gift. Read more
Published on 8 April 2010 by Mrs. P. C. Knight
3.0 out of 5 stars scraping the barrel?
Bit of a shame this was released in some ways. It is poignant, but not the best example of Cash's later work.
Published on 7 April 2010 by R. Allen
5.0 out of 5 stars CASH
I listen to this CD three or four times to be able to take it in and actually listen and hear but it is a fantastic CD and recommend it to all. Read more
Published on 4 April 2010 by T. K. Rae
3.0 out of 5 stars Cash
Heard a good track on the radio - never bought a Johnny Cash album before - very dour, play it and think of Gordon Brown and his ilk then pour another one! Read more
Published on 4 April 2010 by RFT
5.0 out of 5 stars Johnnie Cash's last album: Ain't No Grave
A little sombre and reflective but if you like J Cash's music then you'll not fail to be moved by this selection of songs.
Published on 30 Mar 2010 by S. READ
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