Song of the Day: “A Boy Named Sue” – Johnny Cash



Hello Rocknuts community! Today we celebrate the birthday of writer and poet Shel Silverstein. In addition to delighting generations of children with his books of poetry (Where the Sidewalk Ends, A Light in the Attic, etc), Silverstein also dabbled in rock lyrics occasionally. In fact, he originally wrote the lyrics for the Johnny Cash classic “A Boy Named Sue.” It’s hard to imagine that song in the hands of anyone else but the Man in Black, and Cash’s deep baritone only enhances Silverstein’s whimsical story. Silverstein also wrote “The Cover of the Rolling Stone” for Dr. Hook in 1972. I woudn’t call that song “great” in the sense that the word is normally used, but it’s a “fun” song. Sometimes, dear reader, a “fun” song is enough. Silverstein died in 1999, but “Sue” has become a mainstay of both classic rock and country stations across the world, and stands as one of the great tragi-comic story songs. Add that to the fact that new children are discovering his work daily, and we can be reasonably sure that Shel Silverstein’s legacy will live on.

He also wrote an incendiary rant against modern capitalism that’s pretty popular in some circles. You may know it better as “The Giving Tree.”

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