Born September 6th, 1939 in Akron, Ohio, USA. From the age of nine, Coe was in and out of reform schools, and prisons. his publicity states, spending on Death Row after killing an inmate who demanded oral sex. Rolling Stone magazine questioned this, Coe responded with a song, ‘I’d Like To Kick The Shit Out Of You’. Whatever the truth of the matter, Coe was paroled in 1967 and took his songs about prison life to Shelby Singleton who released two albums on his SSS label.
Coe wrote Tanya Tucker’s 1974 US country number 1, ‘Would You Lay With Me (In A Field Of Stone)?’. He took to calling himself Davey Coe – the Mysterious Rhinestone Cowboy, performing in a mask, and driving a hearse. He satirized the themes of country music with hilarious additions to Steve Goodman’s ‘You Never Even Called Me By My Name’. His love of motorbikes, tattoos and long hair made him a natural ‘Nashville outlaw’. which he wrote about in the self-glorifying ‘Longhaired Redneck’ and ‘Willie, Waylon And Me’.
78 and beyond
In 1978 Johnny Paycheck had a US country number 1 with Coe’s ‘Take This Job And Shove It’, which inspired a film of the same title in 1981, and Coe’s own successes included the witty ‘Divers Do It Deeper’ (1978), ‘Jack Daniels If You Please’ (1979), ‘Now I Lay Me Down To Cheat’ (1982), ‘The Ride’ (1983), which conjures up a meeting between Coe and Hank Williams, and ‘Mona Lisa’s Lost Her Smile’ (1984), which reached number 2 on the US country charts, his highest position as a performer. Recordings with other performers include ‘Don’t Cry Darlin” and ‘This Bottle (In My Hand)’ with George Jones, ‘I’ve Already Cheated On You’ with Willie Nelson, and ‘Get A Little Dirt On Your Hands’ with Bill Anderson. Coe’s main trick, however, is to remain successful, as country music fans grow exasperated with his over-the-top publicity.