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Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash
He was the man in black. She was the woman whose blue eyes he saw everywhere. Country music fixtures before they ever met, together they formed a partnership as solid as bedrock. Looking back at their history, it's really no surprise that Johnny and June Carter Cash were drawn to one another. Both were born into families who embraced country music, both could command a stage. They ran in the same social circles and were introduced by none other than the King himself, Elvis Presley.
But for all their similarities, there were vast differences. June‘s image remained wholesome throughout her career. Johnny was a bit of a loner, not only credited with roughing up country music's clean-cut image, but blighting his own through drug and alcohol addiction. With her help, he worked hard to overcome his addictions, though it proved to be a lifelong struggle: As late as 1985, he checked himself into the Betty Ford Center.
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While Johnny Cash won numerous accolades during his lifetime, June is probably most famous for co-authoring (with Merle Kilgore) "Ring of Fire," the atypical and dark love song about her unrequited love for Johnny during their early friendship. The Cashes remained together until her death in 2003. He died a little less than 4 months later. They are buried beside each other in Hendersonville, Tennessee.
George Jones and Tammy Wynette
Known to many as the tragic country queen, Tammy Wynette was the first country music artist to go platinum and counts more than 20 number-one hits on her resume. Talented but headstrong and prone to drama, she was a disaster when it came to relationships. Her gift lay in the endearing and sad delivery of her songs. In tunes such as the famed "Stand by Your Man," fans and critics alike felt the devastation residing beneath. This dark undercurrent may have drawn her to George Jones, a superstar in his own right, Jones charted more than 160 songs on the Billboard charts during his career, more than any other country artist.
During their six-year marriage, Jones made headlines for more than his music. Notorious for his off-stage bad habits, which included a cocaine addiction and an uncanny ability to locate the nearest bar, he became notorious for skipping out on shows. His many concert cancellations (more than 50) over his career earned him the nickname “No Show” Jones.
Although their marriage crumbled beneath the limelight, Wynette and Jones continued to collaborate in the studio. Together, they recorded three songs that reached the top 10 country music charts. Two decades later, in 1995, they paired up again for their reunion album, One — the last album Wynette recorded before her death in 1998. Jones, happily married to his fourth wife, manager Nancy Sepulvado, continues to perform today. He credits Sepulvado with saving him from his hard-living ways.