It’s no secret that David Allan Coe will forever go down as one of the most polarizing outlaw country artists to ever exist.
He’s a love him or hate him kinda guy, always doing things his own way with absolutely zero regrets, but we can’t avoid the fact that the man has written and/or recorded some of the most iconic country songs we still know and love today.
From “You Never Even Called Me by My Name,” to “The Ride,” “Longhaired Redneck,” the OG version of “Tennessee Whiskey,” to writing Johnny Paycheck’s megahit “Take This Job and Shove It,” the man was a hitmaking machine in his hay day.
Of course, it’s been a tough ride along the way, from spending the majority of his childhood and early adulthood in reform schools while growing up in Akron, Ohio, to having to live in a hearse he parked outside of the Ryman Auditorium, until he finally caught the eye of Plantation Records.
Needless to say, I’d kill for a chance to get to sit down with the guy, or some of those close to him to hear the absolutely bonkers stories he’s accumulated over the years… some of which, might not even be tru.
With that being said, I discovered yet another wild story from one of the wildest country artists to ever walk the planet.
According to All Music, David Allan Coe’s contract with Columbia Records came to an end in 1990, and was having some major divorce troubles with his wife at the time, further putting him into a downward financial spiral.
He then got into some big time trouble with the IRS, and they seized his Key West, Florida home.
Allegedly living homeless for some time, Coe spent several months living inside a cave in Tennessee.
Of course, a number of people have been skeptical about the claims, but it’s pretty wild to think about how one of the greatest outlaw country artists of all time who had already seen the peak of his success, eventually had to spend time living out of a cave.
From there on out, Coe began to record with some smaller labels, and even charted with his 1997 concert, Live: That Ain’t Country.
However, given that traveling was his only source of income at the time, he often had to get members of Confederate Railroad, the Allman Brothers, Government Mule, Warren Hayes, and even his son Tyler to even have a full band.
I guess it’s just another day in the life of an outlaw country artist.