Today's Danzig Days pick: Johnny Cash's "13," which was written by Glenn Danzig. That's right: The men behind the albums My Mother's Hymn Book and 6:66 Satan's Child collaborated.
Johnny Cash's recording career was considered dead and buried before he teamed with producer Beastie Boys/LL Cool J producer Rick Rubin for 1994's unplugged masterpiece, American Recordings, which reignited
Cash's cachet. Rubin had previously helped upgrade Danzig's profile as the punk frontman transitioned from the gothy Samhain to his rockier self-titled band. Rubin reached out to Danzig to pen "13," one of the many dark moments from the Cash LP. It's every bit on par with the murder ballad single "Delia's Gone." With the haunting hard-luck anthem, one man in black helped another tap a new generation of fans.
Danzig would also record an electric version of song on his 1999 album, 6:66 Satan's Child. In the press material for the album, the songwriter seemed irked that the original Cash version omitted the couplet, "Find with a preacher man, confessing all I've done/Catch me with the Devil, playing 21." The version in Cash's Rubin-era collection, Cash Unearthed, restores the rhyme. —D.X. Ferris
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