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Trivia Q & A # 34 – 2019

Posted in: Entertainment History, News, Trivia Q & A | No Comments | Posted on by Mary Anne

Q. What was the inspiration for the Johnny Cash hit “A Boy Named Sue”?

A. This was written by the multi-talented Shel Silverstein, who later wrote several hits for Dr. Hook, including “Sylvia’s Mother” and “Cover Of The Rolling Stone.” Silverstein also wrote several popular children’s books. He got the idea for the song from his friend Jean Shepherd – a guy who had to deal with a girly name. Shepherd was a writer/humorist like Silverstein; he narrated the 1983 movie A Christmas Story, which is based on his writings.

Shel sang his song ‘Boy Named Sue,’ and Johnny’s wife June Carter thought it was a great song for Johnny Cash to perform. And not too long after that they were headed off to San Quentin to record a record – Live At San Quentin – and June said, ‘Why don’t you bring that Shel song with you.’ And so they brought the lyrics. And when he was on stage he performed that song for the first time ever, he performed it live in front of that captive audience, in every sense of the word.

Shel sang his song ‘Boy Named Sue,’ and Johnny’s wife June Carter thought it was a great song for Johnny Cash to perform. And not too long after that they were headed off to San Quentin to record a record – Live At San Quentin – and June said, ‘Why don’t you bring that Shel song with you.’ And so they brought the lyrics. And when he was on stage he performed that song for the first time ever, he performed it live in front of that captive audience, in every sense of the word.

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