Coe,David Allan - Penitentiary Blues
Penitentiary Blues
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Penitentiary Blues is the first album released by country artist David Allan Coe. It was released in 1969 on SSS International Records. This was before Coe started doing country music, starting with Mysterious Rhinestone Cowboy, and is consisted of entirely of blues songs.


*David Allan Coe – vocals

*Teddy Paige, Jerry Kennedy, Mac Gayden – guitar

*Teddy Paige, Charlie McCoy, Ed Kollis – harmonica

*William C. Sanders, Billy Linneman, Mac Gayden, Charlie McCoy – bass

*Karl Himmel, Kenneth Buttrey – drums

*David Briggs – piano

*Teddy Paige, Shelby S. Singleton, Jr. – production

*Joe Venneri - engineering

*Gayle Allen - photography

Category:David Allan Coe albums

Category:1969 albums

This text has been derived from Penitentiary Blues on Wikipedia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License 3.0

Artist/Band Information

David Allan Coe (born September 6, 1939 in Akron, Ohio) is an American Outlaw country music singer who achieved popularity in the 1970s and 1980s. He has written and performed over 280 original songs throughout his career. As a singer, his biggest hits were "Mona Lisa Lost Her Smile," "The Ride," "You Never Even Called Me by My Name", "She Used to Love Me a Lot", and "Long Haired Redneck." His best-known compositions are the #1 successes "Would You Lay With Me (in a Field of Stone)" by Tanya Tucker; and "Take This Job and Shove It", which was later covered by Johnny Paycheck that was later a hit movie (both Coe and Paycheck had minor parts in the film).


David Allan Coe is well known as an "Outlaw" style country and western artist. Many of his songs are of a humorous topic and have lyrics about himself in association with other famous country "Outlaws."

Coe was a featured performer in Heartworn Highways, a 1975 documentary film by James Szalapski. Other performers featured in this film included Guy Clark, Townes Van Zandt, Rodney Crowell, Steve Young, Steve Earle, and The Charlie Daniels Band.

During the 1980s, Coe enjoyed a resurgence in mainstream popularity, twice hitting the top 10 of the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart with "The Ride" (1983) and "Mona Lisa Lost Her Smile" (1984). "The Ride" recounts a drifter's encounter with the ghost of country music legend Hank Williams. "Mona Lisa" is a mid-tempo ballad about a broken love affair, featuring allusions to the iconic Da Vinci painting. He also just missed the top 10 in early 1985 with "She Used to Love Me a Lot".

Coe's long career has included twenty-six LPs, with 1987's Matter of Life... and Death being one of the most successful and critically acclaimed. He even put out a concept album, Compass Point, that threads his autobiography (or that of his persona) through an encounter with the famous Caribbean studio for which it was named and where it was recorded.

Coe tours rigorously each year, often performing in bars, clubs, or fairs. Only a drummer, steel guitarist, lead guitarist (Tyler, Coe's son) and a background vocalist (Kim, Coe's wife) accompany the singer, who plays a Dimebag Darrell Dean electric guitar throughout the show.

Setlists are never written down; Coe generally performs songs that appeared on his classic Columbia LPs (including many album cuts), by other country songwriters he admires, or his friends, particularly Kid Rock. A rarity these days, Coe also personally drives his own bus .

Rebel Meets Rebel

Coe sang lead vocals for Rebel Meets Rebel, a country-metal band consisting of Coe and Dimebag Darrell, Vinnie Paul, and Rex Brown from Pantera. The self-titled album was recorded between 2001 and 2002, but was not released until May 2, 2006, two years after Darrell's murder.


Coe was in and out of reform schools, correction centers, and prisons from the age of 9. According to his publicity campaigns, he spent time on death row for killing an inmate who demanded oral sex. A public TV documentary produced by KERA Dallas followed Coe back to the prison where he did time. The show ended with a director's note that prison officials could not back up Coe's claims of being on death row. Rolling Stone magazine questioned Coe about the claim in an article titled "Rhinestone Ripoff", putting Coe in a position of having to prove his own guilt. Regardless of the facts, Coe claimed to have been incarcerated at several prisons, including Ohio State Reformatory in Mansfield OH (not the location of Ohio's death row at the time). He claimed to have been paroled in 1967, after which he made his way to Nashville where he embarked on his career, recording for small labels before being signed to Columbia Records.http

Coe recorded two albums in 1978 and 1982 containing racist and misogynistic lyrics of extreme vulgarity and racial crudity: Nothing Sacred and Underground Album. Also available is a best of the albums compilation entitled "18 X-Rated Hits." Coe has defended the songs such as "My Wife Ran Off With a Nigger" as bawdy fun which never made him much money—as well as pointing out that his drummer at the time, Kerry Brown (son of blues guitarist Gatemouth Brown) is black and married to a white woman. Napster users added to the confusion regarding Coe's racist songs by uploading mislabeled offensive works by other artists, especially Johnny Rebel, whose songs are often mistakenly attributed to Coe.

Coe was a member of the one percenter biker club, Outlaws MC. Very early in his career, Coe was in the popular Cleveland rock band , founded by Danny Sheridan.



* Just For The Record...the Autobiography

* The Book of David

* Ex-Convict

* Poems, Prose and Short Stories

* Psychopath

* Whoopsy Daisy (audio book)




*Tucker, Stephen R. (1998). "David Allan Coe". In The Encyclopedia of Country Music. Paul Kingsbury, Editor. New York: Oxford University Press. p. 102.

This text has been derived from David Allan Coe on Wikipedia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License 3.0

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