Mudcat Café message #1725226 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #90789   Message #1725226
Posted By: Jeri
23-Apr-06 - 08:39 AM
Thread Name: Johnny Cash - How come an icon?
Subject: RE: Johnny Cash - How come an icon?
You have to know that respect isn't a prize won by competition. All of those guys you named can be icons. Icons are symbols - pick the ones you want. Societies make icons, not individuals, so it doesn't really matter what we think.

He's probably in the running for sainthood because 1) he was famous, and 2) he died. Simple. You were his fan for a long time, so you may be more aware of his humanity than some of those who just listened after he died. Keep in mind though, that icons and saints are completely different things. I believe he was an icon long before he died.

I watched his TV show, and claimed (to the other kids) that my parents made me when they took over the TV. Well, they DID take over the TV, but I actually enjoyed the show. I even liked HIM, although I can't remember ever admitting that to other kids. There was something dark and deep about his music, and he'd paid his dues.

He wasn't a great singer or player, but he did well enough. He wrote good songs. The brain is said by some to be the ultimate musical instrument, and he was a virtuoso at that. At a point in his life when others would have played it safe and become parodies of themselves, he recorded songs by the likes of Nine Inch Nails, and bared his soul in videos where his hands shook and he looked as fragile as a frost-touched autumn blossom. He wasn't afraid to talk about his failures. The creativity and courage remained even as his health failed. They aren't enough for sainthood - I don't believe in saints anyway. These public aspects of the man are enough for my respect and admiration, the mistakes he made along the way aren't enough to diminish those things.