My Mother's Hymn Book

( 6 )

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Initially released on the 2003 box set Unearthed, the 15 songs on My Mother's Hymn Book were literally drawn from the dog-eared hymn book that Johnny Cash's mother kept by her side most of her life. Cash's own liner notes, moving in their simple expression of basic truths, reveal the depth of feeling he has for these songs, as he relates them to his own life experiences and philosophies. Intentionally or not, the sequence plays out like a Southern Baptist hymn service, opening with the beautiful "Where We'll Never Grow Old." The testimony continues with jaunty renditions of "I Shall Not Be Moved," "Do Lord," and "I'll Fly Away," expressing jubilation over the prospect of...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Initially released on the 2003 box set Unearthed, the 15 songs on My Mother's Hymn Book were literally drawn from the dog-eared hymn book that Johnny Cash's mother kept by her side most of her life. Cash's own liner notes, moving in their simple expression of basic truths, reveal the depth of feeling he has for these songs, as he relates them to his own life experiences and philosophies. Intentionally or not, the sequence plays out like a Southern Baptist hymn service, opening with the beautiful "Where We'll Never Grow Old." The testimony continues with jaunty renditions of "I Shall Not Be Moved," "Do Lord," and "I'll Fly Away," expressing jubilation over the prospect of heavenly rewards. A brisk rendition of "Where the Soul of Man Never Dies" anticipates a utopian eternal life in God's palace before three resonant, somber hymns of invitation -- "In the Garden," "Softly and Tenderly," and "Just as I Am" -- close the disc with powerful exhortations to embrace the spiritual life, just as we are, without a single plea. It's a message Cash conveys through his craggy voice and acoustic strums, and it's the same one he advanced his entire career, even in his darkest hours of inner turmoil, "when the demons crawled up my back," as he writes here. Inspirational and stirring, My Mother's Hymn Book finds the artist in his twilight, energized by his faith and making every note count.
All Music Guide - Matt Collar
Originally included as part of the exhaustive Unearthed box set of Johnny Cash's American Records recordings, My Mother's Hymn Book is exactly what it claims to be -- songs directly out of Cash's mother's old hymnal. Featuring Cash alone playing an acoustic guitar, this is a stark, beautiful, and simple album. In the liner notes, Cash calls this his favorite record he's ever made and it's clear that learning these songs as a child is what inspired his love of music. In that sense, despite no original material, these are some of the most personal songs Cash ever recorded; he even includes song-by-song commentaries that help illuminate what each track meant to him. For Merle Travis' "I Am a Pilgrim" Cash writes, "It's one of those old country gospel classics that my mother sang, that I knew I would record it someday." Of course, Cash recorded gospel songs before this album, as in 1959 with Hymns by Johnny Cash and again in 1962 with Hymns From the Heart and he usually included one gospel track per album. Never before though had he focused so purely on his Christian roots, and given what is known about his problems with drug abuse and the break-up of his first marriage, these songs seem to ring with the conflicts of joy and sorrow, guilt and redemption. Although technically not Cash's last recording, My Mother's Hymn Book represents where his musical career began and ultimately where it ended.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/6/2004
  • Label: Lost Highway
  • UPC: 602498613337
  • Catalog Number: 000236202
  • Sales rank: 11,071

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Johnny Cash Primary Artist
Karen Adams Group Member
Technical Credits
Johnny Cash Liner Notes
Rosanne Cash Liner Notes
Merle Travis Composer
William Lee Golden Composer
Wayne Raney Composer
Rick Rubin Producer
Albert E. Brumley Composer
William B. Bradbury Composer
Marion Easterling Composer
Charlotte Elliot Composer
Joseph Philbrick Webster Composer
John R. Cash Arranger
John Carter Cash Liner Notes
James C. Moore Composer
Sanford Fillmore Bennett Composer
Vlado Meller Mastering
Thomas Wright Composer
C. Austin Miles Composer
James Black Composer
Will L. Thompson Composer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 6 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    Very emotionally stirring

    While it sounds as though Mr. Cash was getting weak at the time of this recording, it only adds to the heartfelt emotion.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Cash said this was his favorite...it's mine, too.

    Cash said this CD was his favorite and I can see why. Recorded at his Hendersonville, Tennessee home with just his long-time sound engineer present. It's just Cash, his guitar and his mother's actual hymn book. What else do you need?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Outstanding and moving

    I just bought this record today, and it is already one of my favorites. I am already partial to minimalist styled music, so that may explain part of my love for this record, but I also love the timeless hymns performed here, some of which are my favorites. This is one awesome disc.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    test - daria

    test - daria

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 5, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews