Sound: Johnny Cash has redefined the meaning country music, by adding rock & roll and other styles into it, and is an unforgettable pop culture icon, especially with the movie Walk The Line. This CD collection of 104 songs (9 unreleased) spanning Johnny's career, starting in late 1954 with the traditional folk song "Goodnight, Irene" and ends late in Cash's career. This CD collection was put together, in honor of Johnny, who died before. // 10
Lyrics: Cash's lyrics have deep personal emotion in them. These tell the stories of lovers, christians, farmers, and famously, the prisoner/criminal. The country/rockabily sounds playin with him fit all of the songs perfectly. And of course, Johnny's legendary bass-baritone voice sets the perfect tone for his songs. // 10
Overall Impression: This album collection ranks about equal with other Cash compilations, pretty well done, but could be so much more. Here's a CD guide to this collection.
C #1 - straight down Cash classics, perfect mixture of these too. Featuring great songs like "Folsom Prison Blues," "A Boy Named Sue," "Sunday Morning Comin' Down," "Don't Take Your Guns To Town," and of course, "Walk The Line" and "Ring Of Fire."
CD #2 - more of Cash's classics, "Cocaine Blues," "25 Minutes To Go" and "I Got Stripes" with cover songs, such as "Highway Patrolman," "Big Light" and "Forever Young."
CD #3 - collection of older folk songs, the only really disappointment in this collection. With the exception of "Born To Lose," "Delia's Gone," and "Goodnight Irene." Otherwise, standard folk songs.
CD #4 - The Phoenix comes back on CD 4, with Johnny and other singers, making some memorable songs. A few of the awesome songs are "Jackson (with June Carter)," "There Ain't No Good Chain Gang (with Waylon Jennings)," "We Ought To Be Ashamed (with Elvis Costello)," and "Highwayman (with Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, and Waylon Jennings)."
All in all, it's a good collection, and I recommend it to anyone who likes classics of any sorts. If I lost this, I'd definately buy it again. However, some improvements would be to keep about half of CD 3's songs, but adding songs like "The Ballad Of The Last Gunfighter," "Ragged Old Flag," "It Ain't Me, Babe (with June Carter)" and San Quentin." // 8