Sue K. Hicks - Inspiration For "A Boy Named Sue"

Inspiration For "A Boy Named Sue"

Hicks' oddly feminine first name may have inspired the song, "A Boy Named Sue", which Johnny Cash first performed in 1969. The song's author, Shel Silverstein, attended a judicial conference in Gatlinburg, Tennessee— at which Hicks was a speaker— and apparently got the idea for the song title after hearing Hicks introduced. While Cash said he was unaware that Silverstein had any one person in mind when he wrote the song, he did send Hicks two records and two autographed pictures signed, "To Sue, how do you do?"

While his name may have inspired the song's title, Hicks pointed out that the character in the song's lyrics— who seeks revenge against his father after a lifetime of teasing— bore little resemblance to his own life. Hicks' father named him after his deceased mother, who had died from complications with Hicks' birth, rather than, as the song suggests, to make him "strong". Hicks also claimed to have always had a sense of humor about his name, and didn't consider it a source of derision. In 1970, Hicks noted: "It is an irony of fate that I have tried over 800 murder cases and thousands of others, but the most publicity has been from the name 'Sue' and from the evolution trial. ... I was named Sue for my mother, who died after childbirth."

Read more about this topic:  Sue K. Hicks

Famous quotes containing the words sue, named, inspiration and/or boy:

    Apart, we think we wish ourselves together,
    Yet sue for solitude upon our meetings....
    Philip Larkin (1922–1986)

    There was a young lady named Bright,
    Who traveled much faster than light.
    Arthur Buller (1874–1944)

    Shakespeare carries us to such a lofty strain of intelligent activity, as to suggest a wealth which beggars his own; and we then feel that the splendid works which he has created, and which in other hours we extol as a sort of self-existent poetry, take no stronger hold of real nature than the shadow of a passing traveller on the rock. The inspiration which uttered itself in Hamlet and Lear could utter things as good from day to day, for ever.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–1882)

    The boy stood on the burning deck,
    Whence all but he had fled;
    The flame that lit the battle’s wreck,
    Shone round him o’er the dead.

    Yet beautiful and bright he stood,
    As born to rule the storm;
    A creature of heroic blood,
    A proud though childlike form.
    Felicia Dorothea Hemans (1783–1835)