Johnny Cash & Tom Petty
You’re a good man to ride the river with. — Johnny Cash on Tom Petty
The Heartbreakers were one of the all-time great rock ‘n’ roll backing bands, and in 1996, they helped Johnny Cash record his 82nd album and second in the Rick Rubin-produced American Recording series, Unchained. Petty calls it one of the Heartbreakers very best records, and appropriately, it includes a Heartbreakers’ original: “Southern Accents,” from the 1985 album of the same name.
Four years later in 2000, Cash would cut another Petty song: “I Won’t Back Down” (with Petty on the backing harmony).
"[It] almost made me wish i’d never sung it," says Petty, "it was so good. He sang it with such an authority it was kind of like it was written for him."
Photo: Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, Tom Petty.