It’s a January morning in 1968. There are 1,000 convicts in mess hall #2 at Folsom Prison. They’re hooting, hollering, clapping, pounding fists on metal tables.
The object of their excitement is Johnny Cash. He’s onstage under the harsh fluorescent lights, standing tall behind a nicotine veil of smoke. Down in the front row, there’s an inmate with a chiseled face and dark pompadour piled high, sucking on a Pall Mall. He's California state prisoner A597959C — just another face in the crowd.