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In 1996, Johnny Cash spoke freely during an interview about God, rock artists, drugs, wearing the color black and Elvis Presley. For their Blank on Blank series, PBS decided to animate the interview.
Barney Hoskyns, a British interviewer, gets Cash to make some interesting comments and revelations over the course of the six-minute interview. Through the black and white cartoon animation, Johnny Cash’s figures of speech and mannerisms are quite entertaining to watch — especially when they’re paired with some tunes in the background.
At one point during the interview, Hoskyns inquires about Cash’s well-known addiction to painkillers in relation to Cash's jaw. Cash compares himself to an alcoholic. An alcoholic can’t drink and Cash admits that he can’t take pain-killers, implying that the pain rampages.
“For five years I didn't try to take them. I fought it. I have a total of 34 surgical procedures on my left jaw. Every doctor I've been to knows what to do next and to relieve me of pain. I don't believe any of them. I'm handling it. It's my pain. I'm not being brave either. I'm not brave at all. After what I've been through, I just know how to handle it," Cash said in the interview.
The PBS animated interview made its way into the public eye shortly after the new Cash record compilation of unheard music, called Out Among the Stars, was released.
"There are a few things that are in the works right now – probably four or five albums if we wanted to release everything," Cash's son, John Carter Cash said, according to Rolling Stone. "There may be three or four albums' worth of American Recordings stuff, but some of it may never see the light of day."
Watch the video below and enjoy some quick wisdom from Johnny Cash himself.