Massive Johnny Cash Box Set An Homage

Anyone using a Johnny Cash fan on their holiday list might wish to consider placing a bow.

The 63-disc Johnny Cash: The Complete Columbia Album Collection ($230) brings together 59 albums. It starts with 1958’s The Fabulous Johnny Cash, which comprised his first No. 1 country single, Don’t Take Your Guns to Town, also stretches through 1990’s Highwayman two with Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson. Would have turned 80.

Money embraced a number of musical styles — country and western, gospel, blues, rockabilly, traditional balladry and folk — though with his gravelly baritone that was deep made each distinctly his own. The set includes 35 records being published in the USA for the first time on CD. Each title is packaged including the five original records in the Columbia discography of Cash. It includes a full-color booklet which includes information on each album: guest celebrities, recording cities and dates, musicians, songwriters, producers, release dates, catalog numbers and chart positions.

Among the rarities Bob Johnson produces in Nashville in 1970 two Film soundtracks: I Walk the Line, directed by John Frankenheimer and starring Gregory Peck, and Little Fauss and Big Halsy starring Robert Redford and Lauren Hutton.

There are two new compilations to complement the boxed set. Johnny Cash With His Hot & Blue Guitar, a 28-track collection of songs published during his Sun Records years (1954-58), and also the two-CD The Singles, Plus, a 55-song collection spanning 1958-1985 and including singles that did not look on his Columbia records, also guest appearances from Bob Dylan, the Carter Family, Mother Maybelle Carter, June Carter Cash, the Earl Scruggs Revue, Marty Robbins, Willie Nelson and Shel Silverstein.