“He Laid A Guy Out” – Eric Church Says Toby Keith Dragged A Guy Out Of A Bar The First Time They Met

Toby Keith
Toby Keith

We’ve heard a lot of Toby Keith stories since he passed away, but this one might be the least surprising of them all.

The country legend passed away on February 5th after a two-year battle with stomach cancer, and since then the tributes have been pouring in from the country music community and beyond.

Of course one thing Toby was known for was his love of the military and supporting his country. But something else that we knew about the Big Dog Daddy: He wasn’t afraid to throw down when needed.

That shouldn’t be a surprise from a guy who had a song about not being “as good as he once was” but still being able to hold his own in a bar fight if he had to. But apparently Eric Church got to see it firsthand – the first time he ever met Toby.

After he passed away, Eric took some time to remember Toby Keith and the first time they met, which came at a bar in Nashville that they both frequented. And it sounds like quite the introduction:

“My first time I met Toby, we both frequented a bar in Printer’s Alley in Nashville called The Fiddle and Steel Guitar Bar. And I remember walking in my first time and apparently some of the patrons had been harassing a bartender behind the bar and as I walked in, Toby had taken the guy harassing the patrons and had drug him by his shirt collar all the way down the bar.

And as I walked in the door, the guy dropped in front of me, and I look up and there’s Toby Keith, and I kinda stuck out my hand and said, ‘Hi.’

Toby was always a guy that did things his own way, and I think of that, I think of that fondly now when I think of him. We got to be friends later and toured with him, but that’s how I met him. He laid a guy out at my feet at the Fiddle and Steel.”

Quite the first impression.

Of course as Eric said, they became friends after that day. And in 2011, Church served as an opener on Toby’s Locked & Loaded tour, which no doubt produced some incredible stories (including one that Church tells during his To Beat The Devil residency at his bar that I won’t share since he said it couldn’t get out).

They also wrote a song together, which hasn’t been released but sounds like one that we need to hear someday:

“All I need to tell you about his direction and whether me and him were gonna fit as friends or as anything else is we co-wrote a song the other day. He brought the idea, he goes ‘We need to write a song,’ and I said ‘Okay.’

He brings the idea in and it’s ‘Reverend Jack Daniels and the Congregation of the Chemically Altered Mind.’

So then we wrote it, and it actually turned out to be wonderful. But you knew what you’s dealing with right there.”

Tell me that doesn’t sound like a song written by two guys who met while one of them was getting in a bar fight.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock