The Twisted, Touching Story of Johnny and June and the ‘Ring of Fire’

You know “Ring of Fire” as a Johnny Cash song. But as Sarah Vowell explains, Johnny didn’t write it. June did. About Johnny. While she was married to someone else. Then her sister and her mother helped her sing it. It’s a song not about the fire of romance, but about hellfire.

And that’s why country music used to be cool.

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. JimJC
    Nov 04, 2012 @ 01:30:22

    I heard that report on the radio a couple of years ago, and have told many people about it since. Now it’s convenienetly posted for all to hear. Does make the song even cooler, doesn’t it?

    Reply

    • Ed Cyphers
      Nov 04, 2012 @ 01:56:26

      Yeah me too! It was on This American Life.

      Reply

      • mvcoogan
        Nov 04, 2012 @ 21:19:47

        We recently watched the film bio – “I Walk the Line.” This tells the sad, amazing, and yes, very touching story in just 10 minutes. I’ll think about it every time I hear the song now. Its almost a better story than Layla! It IS better, with so many twists and turns. Its really living the cliches of country music.
        Very cool, thanks Ed!

        Reply

        • Ed Cyphers
          Nov 04, 2012 @ 21:27:30

          So glad you like that. The story blew me away too when I first heard it a few years ago. So much so that I went on This American Life’s website and ordered the CD of the show it appeared on (titled “What is This Thing” and first broadcast Sept. 19, 2003).
          Don’t know why I didn’t think to post it sooner.

          Reply

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