Johnny Cash & Friends Sing “Will The Circle Be Unbroken” In 1989

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Some of the biggest names in the genre of country music came together in 1989 to perform for a once in a lifetime recording of “Will the Circle Be Unbroken.”

From Johnny Cash, the Nitty Gritty Band, to the iconic Earl Scruggs, the masterful recording is one for the books. Lead vocals also include contributions from Roy Acuff, Levon Helm, Emmylou Harris, and Jimmy Ibbotson.

Countless artists performed in the background choir including Cynthia Biederman, Sam Bush, Paulette Carlson, Bob Carpenter, Gretchen Carpenter, June Carter Cash, Johnny Cash, Cindy Cash, Rosanne Cash, John Cowan, Steve Dahl, John Denver, Jimmie Fadden, Béla Fleck, Pat Flynn, Radney Foster, Vince Gill, Jeff Hanna, Melody Hanna, John Hiatt, Chris Hillman, Bruce Hornsby, Jimmy Ibbotson, Helen Carter Jones, David Jones, Bashful Brother Oswald, Bill Lloyd, Jimmy Martin, Michael Martin Murphey, Roger McGuinn, Tracy Nelson, Robert Oermann, Brad Parker, Don Schlitz, Earl Scruggs, Gary Scruggs, Randy Scruggs, Steve Scruggs, Lynn Shults, Marty Stuart, Wendy Waldman, Steve Wariner, Cheryl White, Sharon White, and Bobbie White.

This recording was included on the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band’s 1989 album Will The Circle Be Unbroken: Volume 2 in 1989.

The entire record was a collaboration between the country group and other bluegrass and country singers, hence the invigorating gospel performance you can watch below.

“Will The Circle Be Unbroken” was written in 1907 by Ada R. Habershon with music by Charles H. Gabriel. The modern verson was rearranged by AR Carter, a found member of The Carters.

The iconic Christian Hymn has been covered many times, by artists such as Bob Dylan, Susan Boyle, Alabama, and even another star-studded performance by Alan Jackson, Vince Gill, and Alison Krauss.

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You can listen their collaborative recording of “Will The Circle Be Unbroken” below. There truly is nothing like it!