Song:Take This Job And Shove It
Album:The Soul & The Edge: The Best Of Johnny Paycheck
Most music fans should be familiar with Take This Job And Shove It. Johnny Paycheck topped the country music charts with it in 1977. It was even turned into a movie. It turned out to be Paycheck's biggest hit of a long career hampered by a bad temper, alcoholism and jail time. He was born Donald Eugene Lytle May 31, 1938 in Greenfield, OH. As a child, he competed in talent contests. At age 15, he left home and became a hobo. Then he joined the US Navy and he got thrown in the brig for assaulting a superior officer. After discharge, Lytle moved to Nashville. He recorded a few singles as Donny Young. He started working as a sideman and this led to a four year stint with George Jones. Then Lytle changed his name to Johnny Paycheck after a Chicago boxer who had fought Joe Louis. He got together with producer Aubrey Mayhew and they started Little Darlin' Records. Paycheck had some success but he started drinking heavily. Little Darlin' closed in 1969 and Paycheck moved to California. Fortunately, he was found by legendary producer Billy Sherrill and Sherrill signed him to Epic Records. Sherrill's knack for sensing changing musical trends would make Paycheck a star. He had immediate success with the 1971 single She's All I've Got featuring George Jones. It reached #2 on the Country Singles chart. Meanwhile, Paycheck had issues with check forgery, a paternity suit, tax problems and bankruptcy. Paycheck became a regular on the country charts but Sherrill thought Paycheck's bad boy image could get him to the top of the charts. Of course Outlaw Country led by Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson was popular at the time. Sherrill used that to boost Paycheck. On the 1976 album 11 Months and 29 Days, Paycheck appeared behind bars on the album cover. Then Sherrill heard David Allan Coe's 1977 recording of his song Take This Job And Shove It. He thought it was perfect for Paycheck. And sure enough, the song became Paycheck's only number one country music hit single. The song was even turned into a 1981 comedy film starring Airplane's Robert Hays. Unfortunately, Paycheck started to self destruct again. First he had a legal battle with his former manager. Then in 1981, he started a fight an a plane and a flight attendant sued him for slander. Then he was accused of rape of which he was cleared. But Epic had enough and dropped Paycheck. Then he got into a barroom brawl in Ohio that led to an aggravated assault charge. Paycheck recorded for Mercury while appealing. He spent two years in prison. Before he went in, he claimed to find religion. After his release, Paycheck recorded occasionally and opened a theater in Branson, MO. He began to have health problems and he died on Feb. 19, 2003 at age 64. This budget comp covers Paycheck's Epic recordings. They are the original recordings. Beware of off label CDs that are not original recordings. Here's Johnny Paycheck performing Take This Job And Shove It 1977.