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Man in Black: His Own Story in His Own Words

3.93  ·  Rating Details  ·  653 Ratings  ·  52 Reviews
Includes Photo Illustration Section - autobiography
Hardcover, 182 pages
Published August 1st 1975 by Zondervan
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Jan 10, 2011 Sharon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read "Cash," which is a later memoir than "Men in Black," and appreciated Johnny Cash's no-holds-barred approach to telling his own story. How grateful I am to see that the earlier book is in much the same vein.

Cash tells the story of his addiction to amphetamines and barbiturates, his early career, and his faith in a plain-spoken, straightforward manner that readers can appreciate. He makes no secret of the challenges he faced as fame and fortune changed his life, and of how he stumbled along
Jackson Park
I saw the movie Walk the Line many times and now I see how fictionalized the film was. The true story is an amazing testimony of redemption. God put specific people in Johnny's life to help him overcome drugs and when he did, he lived his life for others and for God. Great autobiography!
Nov 18, 2013 Kyle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've read many reviews that don't like this book because Johnny Cash was religious and was raised as such. It amazes me. Obviously these people know enough about him to know he was a spiritual person. Most of these bandwagon fans came around 2003 when he died and the famous "Hurt" video came out. A video that I might remind you was loaded with religious imagery, reflecting the artists personal beliefs YET we still get some zombies giving this a low rating because of his faith.

Basically, that's t
Mar 25, 2012 Justin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It wasn't a particularly enjoyable read, but I did feel that I walked away with a better understanding of who Johnny Cash was. That was my purpose for picking it up in the first place. So, mission accomplished, I guess. The book captured Cash's conflicted nature, his selfishness vs. his religious/ spiritual obligations and in the end I feel that it helped me gain a deeper appreciation for his music. However, in a strange way, I have less respect for him after reading it. Through his music Cash w ...more
Apr 08, 2011 Antoinette rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Antoinette by: Mike
Shelves: music
I'm not sure what it is about Christians working in the entertainment industry that makes them feel the call to make bad movies about Jesus. It is probably the same thing that makes them feel the need to write lame books about their spiritual journey. I really enjoyed the beginning of this book, and I was starting to enjoy the crazy drug party. It just wasn't written well, and it actually hurt my enjoyment of Cash's music. Just...not a very good read. Especially considering I paid a lot of money ...more
Dec 20, 2009 Dave rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Wow, does this suck ass! I guess it is my fault because I didn't look closely enough at the cover to see that this book was published by Zondervan Books, the Christian publishing company. Cash (assuming that he actually wrote this, and not some Christian zombie ghostwriter) can't write two sentences without saying How Great God Art, and how all his music was Inspired By The Lord. (Right, because Jesus always said that you should shoot a man in Reno just to watch him die, and that after you take ...more
Nov 03, 2009 Spencer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book. It's not really an autobiography as much as "some stuff on my mind." The Christian stuff gets pretty boring and freaky superstitious in the last two chapters. It's clear that Johnny Cash has a million stories to tell but not a lot of interest in telling them.

Johnny's voice is clear and human. He's trying to show his own faults while hiding other people's failures. He mostly succeeds leaving the reader feeling like they had a really interesting conversation with an important
Jan 04, 2008 rinabeana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In his introduction, Cash refers to this memoir as a "spiritual odyssey." He tells the story of his life with emphasis on his faith. He is honest about his difficult years of drug addiction and the toll it took on his health and his personal relationships. It always comes back to how the Lord works in his life, though. There is also a focus on songs. Many song lyrics are reprinted in the book and it's wonderful to see how they came about and/or how they had an impact on his life.
Dec 14, 2009 Sara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It still blows my mind that my dad hung out with these old cowboys - Cash, Waylon etc. He's one of the last of the gang left - barely.

I tell you what though - if I ever had to throw down, I'd take these dudes in my corner over any of those stupid gang-bangers today. These guys were/are tougher than nails.
Nov 22, 2015 Jeff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Johnny Cash fans.
Recommended to Jeff by: Discovered it on my own.

1st Read: February 23 - 24, 2015

I quite enjoyed this story! Throughout it all, his deep voice narrated for me as I read each word. In fact, all the stars in this book whom I'd heard speak at some point in my life, either from an interview or TV program, I'd also heard and envisioned. This made it that much more enjoyable.

The story is not descriptive in the sense of how Stephen King or any other great author would write. He gets his point across without having to paint a picture of everything
Liz Austin
Good book, but not his best autobiography. His best one is his second autobiography "CASH". But definitely a must read for any Cash fan.
Jan 29, 2012 gazoo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What makes a country legend. I have to assume honesty, humility and a truckload of talent and they come thru loud and clear in this book. Cash, a god-fearing man whose love for music was second only to his love of the Lord, takes you on a tuff journey where the claws of deception got a hold of him and lucky for us he was able to shake them loose. What really blows me away is the ending was just the beginning to an incredible musical revival that was so damn raw and original which has to be an in ...more
Theresa Williams
read this years ago for school
Apr 18, 2011 Adam rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Started out interesting...childhood, mid-western farm life struggles in a post depression. His brother died (sad, but important)...he was raised in a religious home, but only connected to the gospel music, then he makes it big, and gets addicted to amphetamines. That was interesting too, but most everything before those 7 years and after was unimportant minutia; accounting his friendships in the country music world and his new found proclamation of his lord and savior, the jovial Jew, Jesus Chri ...more
Marisa Del Rosario
I wish I had read this one first before I read Mr. Cash's other autobiography it the context would have been easier to understand in the second book. I learned a lot about his drug and alcohol addictions in the 1960s and how is wife June Carter helped him come back to reality. I learned about his religion and how it influenced his music throughout his career. I'm not a Christian and I don't like being browbeating into the how christianity will save me but I can see it helped Mr. Cash. Overall, a ...more
Mar 08, 2015 Ben rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Pony. Far too much God bothering.
Sep 23, 2015 Amanda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was wonderful. It was like reading Johnny Cash's diary. His relaying of the crazy things he went through, and all the near death escapes was incredible. He was so lucky to have lived through all of that, and then to find peace afterwards. Written very simply and straightforward, this is a classic, and unique look into the state of mind and spiritual reawakening of one of the most brilliant and talented musical artists of the last century.
Aug 16, 2008 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am so glad that I read this autobiography. I haven't read too many and this one helped put more of Johnny Cash's life in perspective. Walk the Line did a good job of keeping on target the story of his life, but his perspective of his own life is full of wisdom and insight on life. There also was a much stronger emphasis on the impact of faith upon all of his life than the movie depicted.
Found this in the church library. Can you believe it was almost discarded?? I really enjoy the movie, "Walk the Line" and wondered how Cash's 1974 autobiography would compare to the movie. There's not much comparison, except that Cash chronicles his pill addiction in detail in the book. I really don't know much about Johnny Cash but he seems to be an intriguing figure.
Dan Danger
Johnny Cash opens up about his life a career with a decidedly religious slant. This book details his musical careers ups and downs, with only slight references to the crazy stories of being an amphetamine-addicted music sensation touring the US in the 1950s and '60s. This is a quick read, great for anyone interested in how Johnny Cash found Jesus.
Bucky Sinister
I read this, then lost it less than an hour after I finished it. How's that for timing?

This book was put out by Zondervan, the people most famous for publishing Bibles. There's a lot of great stuff in here, but mostly it's his "I found Jesus" book. He's very frank about his speed use.

It's a quick read, great for plane trips and whatnot.
Sep 27, 2009 Mike rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Not a bad book, just superfluous, you're far better off with his subsequent autobiography, Cash. But if you're just interested in him beating pills and his religious experiences, this isn't a bad book. It's just that if you want to read about Ostrich attacks, you'll have to go with the newer autobiography.
Ashley Snow
Sep 22, 2012 Ashley Snow rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
John Cash's Faith is inspiring! I appreciate his life's history in general, (being the fan that I am), but his spiritual history & its continuous growth I respect and admire even more than his music after reading this....5 Stars!
Jul 30, 2008 Rick rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I once had the opportunity to tell Cash I and my sister both read his bio and shared its impact on our family with him. It was a sublime moment as this book paved the way for big changes which were extremely positive.
Sep 15, 2008 Adam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Open and honest Johnny Cash. It's intriguing to get a glimpse into the country music world when singing "Gospel" (as in hymns and such) was a norm for live performance. Good look into the journey of faith.
Shannon Carrier
Jan 24, 2008 Shannon Carrier rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: the band-wagoners that didn't grow up hearing the Highwaymen!
My favorite part is when Mr. Cash is high as a kite and keeps Charlie Pride up all night. At least, that's the part I recall this second. Forgive me, I read it almost a decade and a half ago.
Dec 12, 2008 Todd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

This book, published before "Cash" is a great read that covers his life up to the mid-70s. So much of his story was yet unwritten to this point, hence the follow-up book.
This book really gives you insight on Johnny Cash's life. He was a very talented musician. This book talks about his life from the beginning. A must read for any Johnny Cash fan.
Dana M.
Sep 21, 2015 Dana M. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book even more than Cash's second autobiography. He talks a lot about his spiritual journey, which is something I'm very interested in.
Patricia Atkinson
its a good book on the life and times of johnny cash one of the best bios I have read on him so far.talks about his music marriage and addictions..
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Johnny Cash, born J. R. Cash, also known as "The Man in Black", was a multiple Grammy Award-winning American country singer-songwriter. Cash is widely considered to be one of the most influential American musicians of the 20th century.

Cash was known for his deep, distinctive voice, his trademark dark clothing which earned him his nickname, the boom-chick-a-boom or "freight train" sound of his Tenn
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