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"Hey, Porter" is a song by Johnny Cash. It was recorded on September 1, 1954 and released as a single in May the following year. It tells the story of a train journey home to Tennessee, from the point of view of a very excited passenger that continually asks the porter for updates.
|Single by Johnny Cash|
|B-side||"Cry! Cry! Cry!"|
|Released||June 21, 1955|
|Recorded||March 22, 1955|
|Johnny Cash singles chronology|
"Hey Porter" is Johnny Cash and the Tennessee Two's first recording; John wrote the song with band mates Luther Perkins and Marshall Grant after Sam Phillips (Owner of Sun Records) turned down "I Was There When It Happened", the song with which John, Luther and Marshall auditioned. The reasoning behind Phillip's decision was that "Sam didn't want a gospel song, he wanted a fast song," like Elvis Presley's "That's All right". Having been stationed in Landsberg, Germany, during his stint with the United States Air Force, Cash based the song on a man returning home from overseas who felt elated to be returning to his native South. "Hey Porter" was the first of many rail-themed songs that Cash would record during his career, and was soon followed by "Folsom Prison Blues", another rail-themed track.
The song is available on many compilations, such as The Complete Sun Singles, The Essential Johnny Cash, Ring Of Fire: The Legend of Johnny Cash Volume Two, The Legend.
The song "Hey Porter" was covered by Ry Cooder in 1972 on his second album Into the Purple Valley. Cash himself re-recorded the song several times as well. Additionally, Cash contributed the vocal for the cover version of "Hey Porter" on the Earl Scruggs Revue Anniversary Special in 1975.
- "Hey, Porter". Second Hand Songs. 1972. Retrieved 6 January 2020.