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That Train Keeps a Rollin’

March 31, 2010

I’m not a fan of country music. Especially “new” country that’s trying to be rock but just comes out a twangy mess.

But I do like bad boys. And I love Johnny Cash.

At Folsom Prison. Released May 1968My first memories of Johnny Cash were early. His album Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison seemed to always be in rotation on visits to my Aunt and Uncle’s “cottage” on Findlay Lake, NY. That was a crazy place for the adults and us kids. Those are stories for another day.

My story is years later. 1990 I was living in Lakewood, OH on the first floor of a triplex. It was a nice house, that eventually became something of an Animal House. Also stories for another day.

1615 Ridgewood

Fourth of July, 1990. It’s hot. Some people are over. we’re attempting a cookout and drinking beer. We’re bored. Did I mention it was hot?

There’s air conditioning at the Corner Pub. And more beer. And a jukebox.

The Corner Pub on Madison at Ridgewood

So the six or so of us head down the street to the pub. Several barflies at the bar. It’s dark and cool and full of smoke already. We commandeer a table, order some beers and Billy and I head to the jukebox. And there it is.

Folsom Prison Blues.

Well we have to hear that. We play some songs. And go back for more. Let’s play it again. So we did. And a round of kamikaze shots ensued. And we played it again. Now a guy has moved from the bar to our table seeing as we are having so much fun on our own smoking and drinking and singing Johnny Cash.

And he says, “I’ll buy you another shot if you’ll play Folsom Prison again.” Well of course! In fact if you buy a round I’ll just keep playing it. And he did. And I played it again and again and again. And now the bartender is getting a little surly. But we’re just having a grand old time smoking and drinking and singing and then I see it. On the wall. A framed handbill advertising 10-Cent Beer Night. If you are not from Cleveland or even if you are, I found a pretty good article about it here: Remembering 10-Cent Beer Night.

I call this to the attention of the group and we proceed to take it down and slowly move it toward the door. And we almost made it. That made the bartender more than surly. In fact she was downright rude as she ordered us out. Heh heh. A few months later I was back at the Corner Pub and it had been screwed to the wall.

So when we got the juke running I went looking for places that still sold 45s. This was part of my first order with Continental Records. Continental Records Company Ltd.

Columbia Records 13-33153, 1968- New old stock at Continental Records

So because of that kamikaze-addled Fourth of July, and because that train keeps a rollin’ it stays in the jukebox.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. April 1, 2010 10:31 am

    great to hear a bit about your wild side…i often find myself in similar situations when i think “What Would Judd Do?”

    I used to have this fantasy of being a street sign burglar with high tech equipment that allowed me to laser them off the poles without a noise. I wanted to have a secret den with all the signs lining the wall. and a hot girlfriend/accomplice. this all started because i found out one night a long time ago that it’s VERY difficult to remove a street sign (this particular one was for high st.) by climbing, pounding and yanking, no matter how looped you are.

    • jukebox1965 permalink*
      April 1, 2010 1:19 pm

      WWJD? I have a feeling just about anything. The wild side is always an undercurrent lying in wait.

  2. April 1, 2010 1:06 pm

    I also grew up listening to Johnny Cash- my dad had an old record player whose scratchy effect on the records added that much more to the mood. I wanted to share with you the link of a new website that just launched (which I worked on so yes I am shamelessly plugging); it was designed as a tribute to the man himself.
    It’s a crowd-sourcing project that aims to bring people together from around the world to create the first ever user-generated music video. There’s a drawing tool (similar to photoshop) that you use to submit your portrait and then we string them all together to make the video. Check it out if you have a minute! -> http://www.thejohnnycashproject.com We need a lot of participation to make this work but its looking pretty good so far.
    Wishing you all the best (nice blog by the way) ~

    • jukebox1965 permalink*
      April 1, 2010 1:17 pm

      Thanks very much for reading! I will definitely check out the project. Took a quick peek and the design is fab.

  3. April 2, 2010 1:37 pm

    very fun! I know what you’ll be singing if we ever do a karaoke night….
    Do you have the tshirt to go with it? I think that would be a black logo on a black box on a black tshirt, right? đŸ™‚ Happy Friday!

    • jukebox1965 permalink*
      April 2, 2010 1:40 pm

      That would be a right-on on all accounts. I almost have a low enough voice for it…

  4. April 2, 2010 7:38 pm

    WWJD? He would have moved “swiftly” not slowly.

    Johnny…he walked with kings and never lost touch with the common man. A true hero of mine. That must NEVER leave your juke!

    Dope…I once tried to steal a stop sign. While I was ripping it out of the ground the cops came. I ran. They sicked the dog on me. Damn thing cornered me and went to attack. Fortunately they called it off before it did any real damage (I was in high school…or maybe that was last weekend).

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