Rosanne is the daughter of Johnny Cash and his first wife, but spent most of her teen and young adult life on the road with her father and his second wife, singer/songwriter June Carter. With her stepsister Carlene Carter, Rosanne sang backup on the Cash-Carter Family show.
By the early 1980s she decided to break off on her own and record her first record, something Carlene Carter had started doing in 1976. Rosanne hooked up, both professionally and romantically, with singer/songwriter/guitarist Rodney Crowell, who co-wrote and produced most of the tracks on her first few albums. Cash and Crowell would eventually marry and then divorce, but not before their partnership yielded a Top 10 country and pop radio hit, "Seven Year Ache."