A Boy Named Sue is a well known country song by Johnny Cash. It is a story song, partly spoken and partly sung, in which the protagonist tells us of his troubles as a boy growing up without his father, who "before he left, he went and named me "Sue"". The boy was picked on all through his life due to having a girl's name, and he grew up tough due to having to defend himself from bullies, "It seems I had to fight my whole life through".
One day as a grown man, he comes across his father in a saloon; "There at a table, dealing stud, sat the dirty, mangy dog that named me "Sue"". ""My name is 'Sue!' How do you do!? Now you gonna die!"" he says, and he starts a bar fight with his father. Eventually guns get involved, and the protagonist has the upper hand by drawing his gun quicker. His father smiles, proclaims the son fought well, and "ya ought to thank me, before I die, for the gravel in ya guts and the spit in ya eye", since the name the father gave the son forced him to grow up tough. Father and son make amends with each other, and as the song comes to a close, the protagonist muses "if I ever have a son, I think I'm gonna name him" and then pauses slightly before the punchline of "Bill or George! Anything but Sue!"
Johnny Cash first performed and recorded the song in 1969 at a concert he was performing at San Quentin State Prison. He had only recently heard the song himself, as his friend Shel Silverstein had written the song not long before and performed it during an informal guitar pull. Cash did not rehearse the song before his performance, having to refer to the lyrics written on a sheet of paper often, and with his band providing improvised backing. Silverstein also released a version of the song in 1969 on his album Boy Named Sue and His Other Country Songs.