Country Legend Johnny Cash

Celebrities, Celebrity Q&A, People
on August 3, 2003

I would like to know about Johnny Cash. Why isn't he performing anymore?
—Paula D., Missouri

"The Man in Black" suffers from autonomic neuropathy, a disease of the nervous system that makes him susceptible to pneumonia and has resulted in repeated hospitalizations in the past few years. He stopped touring in 1997. "He just isn't well enough to perform and he doesn't know day to day how he's going to feel so he can't schedule things," a spokeswoman says. However, he did perform at the Carter Fold in Hiltons, Va., on June 23, in honor of his late wife's birthday. He suffered a tragic blow in May when he lost his wife of 35 years, June Carter Cash. Carter Cash, a Grammy-winning musician, actress, comedian, author, and second-generation member of country music's Carter Family, died at 73 of complications from heart surgery. Carter Cash co-wrote her husband's hit Ring of Fire about falling in love with him. Johnny Cash is still recording, however, and won his 11th Grammy this year for male country vocal performance for Give My Love to Rose. In fact, he began recording again just a few weeks after his wife's death. He is a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. His critically acclaimed 2002 album American IV: The Man Comes Around, was certified gold.