Elvis Costello, Chris Cornell, and more helped turn some Johnny Cash poems into songs

In 2016, Johnny Cash’s family released Forever Words, a collection of unpublished poetry that they found among his possessions after he died, and now they’ve teamed up with a number of musicians to try and reinterpret some of those poems—and other artifacts found in Cash’s papers—into proper songs. The artists involve…

Our new parenting feature kicks off with a look at the world of trains

If you’re a parent, as well as an A.V. Club reader, you undoubtedly want to raise your kid with that same pop-culture savvy. Our new A.V. Club Field Guide To Parenting is designed to guide you toward the best kids’ books, shows, movies, and music, just like we do with The A.V. Club for adults. Every month or so, we

Coming to America, part 2: 12 more pivotal moments in the life of Neil Diamond

“There are two types of people in this world,” Bill Murray’s Bob tells his therapist Leo (Richard Dreyfuss) in the 1991 movie What About Bob? “Those who like Neil Diamond, and those who don’t.” Many of us here at The A.V. Club fall into that former camp, even though Diamond’s long career has definitely had its peaks…

20 live versions of songs that slay their studio counterparts

Going to live shows can be amazing, but it’s rare that a live version of a song is better than whatever a particular artist has already laid down on tape. (Production takes weeks, costs fortunes, and requires producers for a reason.) It happens, though, and when it does—when a live song surpasses its original…

18 musicians that need the American Recordings treatment

Johnny Cash would’ve been a legend regardless, but 1994’s American Recordings brought the singer a late-career renaissance with a formula that many have since tried to emulate. With Rick Rubin on board as producer/guru, Cash turned in his most stripped-down, emotional set in decades, and the album—his 81st!—stands…

Of 2 princes and kings of 8: Counting to 12 with 12 Sesame Street counting songs

Music is inherently numerical: A song’s time signature represents a brief, repeating exercise in algebra; chords are arranged in intervals of thirds and sevenths (and ninths and elevenths if you want to get really tricky with it). Nothing on TV has harnessed this truth quite like Sesame Street, whose mission to…

5 seconds to 17 years: A countdown of 17 songs about specific lengths of time

With a beat that pulsates like a racing heart, Twin Shadow provides a perfect tune to wiggle to with “Five Seconds.” The lyrics, however, reveal a much harsher reality, in which the singer struggles with a closed-off lover, singing “Five seconds in your heart / Straight to your heart / I can’t get to your heart.” The…