Johnny 99

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For the Bruce Springsteen song, see Johnny 99 (song).
Johnny 99
Johnny Cash - Johnny 99.png
Studio album by Johnny Cash
Released September 1983 (1983-09)
Recorded April 1983
Length 35:05
Label Columbia
Producer Brian Ahern
Johnny Cash chronology
Koncert V Praze (In Prague–Live)
Johnny 99
Biggest Hits
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[1]

Johnny 99 is the 69th album by American country singer Johnny Cash, released on Columbia Records in 1983. It is notable for including two covers of Bruce Springsteen songs, "Highway Patrolman" and "Johnny 99". "I'm Ragged But I'm Right," a George Jones song, was a minor hit, reaching No. 75. Johnny 99 is generally regarded as a strong release at a point in Cash's career which is considered to be the least successful; it was also the second-to-last solo album released by Cash on Columbia, prior to his move to Mercury Records. Hoyt Axton sings background on "Highway Patrolman" and "Joshua Gone Barbados". "New Cut Road" had been a relatively successful single for Bobby Bare in 1981; Paul Kennerley's "Brand New Dance" would go on to be covered, among others, by Emmylou Harris on her 1990 album of the same name.

Several of the songs on Johnny 99 contain political or social themes and commentary: the title track tells the story of a disgruntled former automobile plant employee who turns to crime after encountering serious financial difficulties; "God Bless Robert E. Lee" praises the Confederacy's most famous general for managing to prevent unnecessary loss of human life in the war-torn South by surrendering to the Union at Appomattox Court House; "Joshua Gone Barbados" deals with a sugarcane-cutters' strike on Saint Vincent turned violent; "Highway Patrolman", in turn, discusses a troubled relationship between the title character and his alcoholic, violent brother.

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Highway Patrolman" Bruce Springsteen 5:17
2. "That's the Truth" Paul Kennerley 2:41
3. "God Bless Robert E. Lee" Bobby Borchers, Mack Vickery 3:40
4. "New Cut Road" Guy Clark 3:30
5. "Johnny 99" Bruce Springsteen 3:33
6. "Ballad of the Ark" Steven Rhymer 2:52
7. "Joshua Gone Barbados" Eric Von Schmidt 5:04
8. "Girl from the Canyon" Carolina Casperson, Jonathan Edwards 2:35
9. "Brand New Dance" (with June Carter Cash) Paul Kennerley 3:21
10. "I'm Ragged But I'm Right" George Jones 2:32


  • Johnny Cash - vocals, acoustic guitar
  • James Burton - electric guitar
  • Bob Wootton - electric guitar
  • Jerry Scheff - bass guitar
  • Hal Blaine - drums
  • Glen D. Hardin - keyboards
  • Brian Ahern - gut string guitar, 6-string bass, tambourine, arrangements
  • Tim Goodman - electric guitar, acoustic guitar, slide guitar, 6-string bass, banjo
  • Nick de Caro - accordion
  • Jo-El Sonnier - accordion
  • David Mansfield - mandolin, mandocello, fiddle
  • Marty Stuart - guitar, mandolin
  • Norton Buffalo - harmonica
  • Hoyt Axton, Barbara Bennett, Donivan Cowart, Lynn Langham - vocals


Singles - Billboard (North America)

Year Single Chart Position
1983 "I'm Ragged But I'm Right" Country Singles 75


External links[edit]