Johnny Cash in the ’80s “was in pain… he was looking for help”

Johnny Cash in the ’80s “was in pain… he was looking for help”

Johnny Cash’s 1980s years in the commercial wilderness are examined in the new issue of Uncut, dated April 2014 and out tomorrow (February 28).

Friends, relations and collaborators, including son John Carter Cash, his guitarist Marty Stuart, singer-songwriter and son-in-law Rodney Crowell and harmonica player Mickey Raphael, who toured with Cash when he was part of The Highwaymen, recall the highs and lows of the country star’s bizarre decade – Muppets, ostriches and Elton John impressions included.

“I knew there were pills, but they weren’t recreational,” says Raphael.

“He was in pain. I remember one night we all gathered around with our hands on him and one of the guys was praying. It was very powerful.

“He was looking for help. There was definitely pain involved, emotional pain and physical pain.”

A lost album from Cash’s ‘80s sessions, Out Among The Stars, is released on March 24.

The new issue of Uncut is out tomorrow (February 28).

Photo: Jim Marshall Photography LLC

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