The One on the Right Is on the Left
|"The One on the Right Is on the Left"|
|Single by Johnny Cash|
|from the album Everybody Loves a Nut|
|B-side||"Cotton Pickin' Hands"|
|Released||February 12, 1966|
|Producer(s)||Don Law, Frank Jones|
|Johnny Cash singles chronology|
"The One on the Right Is on the Left" is a country song written by Jack Clement. It was recorded by Johnny Cash on November 29, 1965 and included on his album Everybody Loves a Nut (1966). It was the album's third and most successful single (see 1966 in music), reaching number two on the U.S. Billboard Country Singles chart and forty-six on Billboard's Pop Singles chart.
The song is a humorous criticism of musicians that put their political views into their music. It tells the story of a folk song group that is "long on musical ability", but ultimately breaks up due to political differences. At the end of the song, a warning is given not to mix politics with one's music.
The punch line to the joke is that "the guy in the rear", is less easily labeled: he is a Methodist and he burned his driver's license (rather than his draft card), etc. Indeed, the song closes by stating that he got drafted.
|U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles||2|
|U.S. Billboard Hot 100||46|
|Canadian RPM Top Singles||35|
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