American Recordings is a studio album by Johnny Cash, released on April 26, 1994.
The album marked the beginning of a career resurgence for Cash, who was approached by producer Rick Rubin and offered a contract with Rubin's American Recordings label, better known for rap and heavy metal than for country music. Rubin had seen Cash perform at Bob Dylan's 30th anniversary concert in late 1992, and felt Cash was still a vital artist who had been unfairly written off by the music industry. Suffering from health problems and recovering from a relapse of his drug addiction, Cash was initially skeptical. The two men soon bonded, however, particularly when Rubin promised Cash a high level of creative control. Rubin told the singer: "I would like you to do whatever feels right for you", and Cash decided to record the first solo album of his career without any accompanying musicians. "Sitting and talking and playing music… that was when we got to build up a friendship," Rubin recalled. "My fondest memories are just of hanging out and hearing his stories. He didn't speak much but, if you drew him out, he seemed to know everything. He was shy and quiet but a wise, wise man."
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