Bootleg, Volume IV: The Soul Of Truth Adds To Johnny Cash Catalog

New set celebrates singer's upcoming 80th birthday landmark.

By , Columnist

Johnny Cash is a name that has immediate recognition.  Throughout his long and productive career, he has managed to create enduring personas for himself.  He was the rebel, the country star, the man in black. But he was also a man of faith. And like several important names that he held camp with, he also left behind a recorded wealth of gospel tracks.

With February 26 (2012) marking his 80th birthday, Sony’s inimitable label of great music from the past, Legacy Recordings, will follow up the Johnny Cash Bootleg series with a 2 CD, 51-track collection of great gospel tunes from the superstar of country music’s vault.  The compilation will be called Bootleg, Volume IV: The Soul Of Truth, collecting valued recorded traditional gospel and spiritual tunes, previously released and never before heard.

The new set will kick off a celebration of the singer’s landmark age. Following the release of Bootleg, Volume IV: The Soul Of Truth, Legacy Recordings will issue a slate of projects honoring Johnny Cash, all being announced in the upcoming weeks as we near the singer’s birthday.


The recordings found on Bootleg IV are from his Columbia Records recording years (1958-1984), and includes music from releases that were not issued by Columbia (although later reissued from the label).  Disc one is comprised mostly of music found on A Believer Sings the Truth (Cachet Records - 1979), and I Believe… (Arrival Records - 1984) while the second disc offers up unreleased tracks from an untitled 1975 album that was shelved, ten tracks from the prized Johnny Cash - Gospel Singer (Priority Records (CBS) - 1983), and four rare and unreleased outtakes from the Johnny Cash - Gospel Singer sessions.

In addition to the treasure trove of Johnny Cash music, the set offers up a booklet that contains an extended essay by Cash’s son, John Carter, as well as photos, and other essential Cash items.

Bootleg, Volume IV: The Soul Of Truth is scheduled for April 3 everywhere.


Disc One - Selections: 1. Wings In The Morning * 2. Gospel Boogie (A Wonderful Time Up There) * 3. Over The Next Hill (We'll Be Home) (with Anita Carter) * 4. He's Alive (with June Carter Cash) * 5. I've Got Jesus In My Soul * 6. When He Comes (with Rosanne Cash) * 7. I Was There When It Happened (with Marshall Grant) * 8. I'm A New Born Man * 9. Strange Things Happening Every Day * 10. Children Go Where I Send Thee * 11. I'm Just An Old Chunk Of Coal * 12. Lay Me Down In Dixie (with Cindy Cash) * 13. Don't Take Everybody To Be Your Friend * 14. You'll Get Yours And I'll Get Mine (with Rodney Crowell) * 15. Oh Come, Angel Band * 16. This Train Is Bound For Glory (with June Carter Cash) * 17. I'm Gonna Try To Be That Way (with Jan Howard) * 18. What On Earth Will You Do (For Heaven's Sake) * 19. That's Enough * 20. The Greatest Cowboy Of Them All (with Jack Routh) * 21. Didn't It Rain * 22. He Touched Me (with Rodney Crowell) * 23. Way Worn Traveler (with Helen Carter) * 24. I'll Have A New Life (with June Carter Cash) * 25. Truth (previously unreleased).  (All tracks recorded January 1979, in Nashville; except tracks 7,11,18 recorded May 1979, in Hendersonville, TN.)

Tracks 1-20 released as A Believer Sings The Truth (Cachet CL3-9001), 1979.
Tracks 1-4, 6, 10, 11, 15, 18, 20 also released as A Believer Sings The Truth (Priority 38074), 1982.
Tracks 21-24 released on I Believe... (Arrival 3870), 1984.

Disc Two - Selections: 1. Back In The Fold * 2. Look Unto The East * 3. I Was There When It Happened * 4. Sanctified * 5. Would You Recognize Jesus * 6. That's Just Like Jesus * 7. What On Earth Will You Do (For Heaven's Sake) * 8. Keep Me From Blowing Away * 9. Don't Give Up On Me * 10. Over The Next Hill (We'll Be Home) * 11. Far Side Banks Of Jordan (duet with June Carter Cash) * 12. Our Little Old Home Town * 13. Belshazzar * 14. My Children Walk In Truth * 15. The Old Rugged Cross (duet with Jessi Colter) * 16. One Of These Days I'm Gonna Sit Down And Talk To Paul * 17. God Ain't No Stained Glass Window * 18. Half A Mile A Day * 19. Another Wide River To Cross * 20. You're Drifting Away * 21. Believe In Him * 22. Over There * 23. Gospel Road * 24. What Is Man * 25. Wildwood In The Pines * 26. Never Grow Old (Tracks 1-12 recorded October, December 1975, in Hendersonville, TN; tracks 13-26 recorded May, August, September, October, December 1982, in Nashville.)

Tracks 1-12, previously unreleased unnamed album (except track 4, previously released as a bonus track on the album Ultimate Gospel (Columbia/Legacy 88697 05838 2) 2007; and track 8, previously released on the album The Great Seventies Recordings (Reader's Digest A764438), 2010.

Tracks 13-22, from the withdrawn-from-release album Johnny Cash-Gospel Singer (Priority 38503) 1983, subsequently released as Believe In Him (Word 47828), 1986, in a different sequence.

Tracks 23-26, previously unreleased outtakes from sessions for the album Johnny Cash-Gospel Singer.

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Matt Rowe began his life with an AM radio, listening to anything that was considered music. Since, he has labored intently to build a collection of music, paring it down, rebuilding, and refining as he sees fit. His decided goal is to keep up with new music by panning for the nuggets among literal mountains…

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