Johnny Cash performs “What Is Truth?” Live On The Johnny Cash Show.

Reached # 3 on the US Hot Country Songs charts, remaining on the charts a total of 14 weeks. On the Canadian RPM Country Tracks charts, it reached at #1 for three consecutive weeks. The song was only released in single, it was not included in any Johnny Cash studio album.

YouTube PeterRabbit59 Channel
YouTube PeterRabbit59 Channel

What Is Truth?:

Single cover Johnny Cash ( Columbia 1970 )
Single cover Johnny Cash ( Columbia 1970 )

“What Is Truth”, a song written and recorded by Johnny Cash for the Columbia label, was recorded on March 9, 1970, at Columbia Recording Studio B, 804 16th Ave. South, Nashville, TN. In the recording session Johnny Cash was accompanied by: Bob Wootton (guitar), Norman Blake (dobro), Marshall Grant (bass) and W.S. Holland (drums). With Bob Johnston’s production, the song was released on March 18, 1970, and on May 30, 1970, reached # 3 on the US Hot Country Songs charts, remaining on the charts a total of 14 weeks. On the Canadian RPM Country Tracks charts, it reached at #1 for three consecutive weeks, from June 6, 1970, to June 20, 1970.

The song was only released in single, it was not included in any Johnny Cash studio album.

“What Is Truth”, is a protest song, about the Vietnam War, and of all wars in general, made the song a major crossover hit.



Versions:

Johnny Doe 1971 (Alshire)
The Scarlets 1971 (Polar)
Jonboy Langford & The Pine Valley Cosmonauts 1994 (Scout Releases)





Johnny Cash – What Is Truth? Lyrics

[Verse 1]
The old man turned off the radio
Said, “Where did all of the old songs go?”
“Kids sure play funny music these days!”
“They play it in the strangest ways.”
Said, “It looks to me like they’ve all gone wild.”
“It was peaceful back when I was a child”
Well, man, could it be that the girls and boys
Are trying to be heard above your noise?
And the lonely voice of youth cries

“What is truth?”

[Verse 2]
A little boy of three sitting on the floor
Looks up and says, “Daddy, what is war?”
“Son, that’s when people fight and die.”
The little boy of three says, “Daddy, why?”
A young man of seventeen in Sunday school
Being taught the golden rule
And by the time another year has gone around
It may be his turn to lay his life down
Can you blame the voice of youth for asking

“What is truth?”

[Verse 3]
A young man sitting on the witness stand
The man with the book says – “Raise your hand!”
“Repeat after me, I solemnly swear”
The man looked down at his long hair
And although the young man solemnly swore
Nobody seems to hear anymore
And it didn’t really matter if the truth was there
It was the cut of his clothes and the length of his hair
And the lonely voice of youth cries

“What is truth?”



Johnny C

[Verse 4]
The young girl dancing to the latest beat
Has found new ways to move her feet
The young man speaking in the city square
Is trying to tell somebody that he cares
Yeah, the ones that you’re calling wild
Are going to be the leaders in a little while
This old world’s waking to a new born day
And I solemnly swear that it’ll be their way
You better help the voice of youth find

What is truth?

And the lonely voice of youth cries
What is truth?

Single Johnny Cash ( Columbia 1970 )
Single Johnny Cash ( Columbia 1970 )

Miquel Batlle
mbatllegarriga@gmail.com