Why I Chose to Cover Johnny Cash’s “Folsom Prison Blues”…. Yes, I Sing and Play Guitar.

When I moved to Nashville on September 11, 2005, it was because I wanted a chance at a career in music; writing songs, singing, and playing guitar.

The problem was, I had earned my college degree in English and was naturally thousands of dollars in debt. Therefore, I accidentally got a full-time job in HR; where I ended up working over a decade of my life.

Obviously, along the way, I found the love of my life, got married, had two kids, and moved to the suburbs.

But my love for doing music never stopped. It was just on hiatus.

Then when my office branch got shut down this past October, forcing me to become a stay-at-home dad, I had to find creative ways to exercise my mind while caring for my young daughter.

Fortunately, she didn’t mind playing on the floor while I played my guitar.

Just the week before I lost my job, I had taken a couple of days off work and met up with a new friend, out in Los Angeles. He also sings and plays guitar. As a souvenir from Nashville, I brought him a very Johnny Cash themed t-shirt.

That stuck in my mind.

So I figured, why not play a Johnny Cash song and put it on YouTube? And that happens to be the video featured at the top of this blog post.

I think part of the strange appeal of “Folsom Prison Blues” is that it’s told from the perspective of a convicted murderer who openly admits he committed the crime, despite his mother’s proactive warnings from the time he was even too young to understand he apparently was predestined for a life of crime.

The song challenges the listener to have compassion on the kind of person most people easily ignore.

As time allows, I definitely plan to record more songs on this new YouTube channel, Nick Shell Music; which is actually my 3rd YouTube channel. Eventually, I plan to release some new original songs of mine.

If nothing else, I am simply doing this for me. Just because I enjoy it.

Maybe you will too.

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