Cash, Johnny - Life's Railway to Heaven
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Cash – The autobiography of Johnny Cash
Moma inherited Grandfather Rivers's talent and his love for music. She could play guitar, and fiddle too, and she sang well. The first singing I remember was hers, and the first song I remember myself singing was one of the songs of faith she'd learned as a child.
I was about four years old, sitting on a chair right beside her on the front porch. She'd sing 'What would you give'- and I’d chime right in with my part, continuing the line -'in exchange for your soul?'
We sang in the house, on the porch, everywhere. We sang in the fields. Daddy would be by himself, plowing, and we kids would be with Moma, chopping cotton and singing. I'd start it off with pop songs I'd heard on the radio, and my sister Louise and I would challenge each other: 'Bet you don't know this one!'
Usually I knew them and I'd join in well before she'd finished. Later in the day we'd all sing together, hillbilly songs and novelty songs, whatever was going around at the time - 'I'm My Own Grandpa,' 'Don't Telephone, Tell a Woman' ' and then, as the sun got about halfway down toward the west and our spirits started flagging, we'd switch to gospel: first the rousing, up-tempo songs to keep us going, then, as the sun began to set, the slower spirituals.
After Jack died, we'd sing all the songs we sang at his funeral. We closed each day in the fields with 'Life's Evening Sun Is Sinking Low.'