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Nov. 24: Johnny Paycheck’s 36-year career had its ups and downs, during stints as a stone honky-tonker, a strings-abetted countrypolitan and, by the time “Slide Off Your Satin Sheets” was released in 1977, an outlaw. The Billy Sherrill-produced gem doesn’t sound “outlaw” to me, but it did lead Paycheck out of a three-year-long trough in the charts.

To know the full story of Johnny Paycheck (1938-2003), you have to know his real name (Donald Lytle), his first stage name (Donny Young), his association with George Jones (during which he became Paycheck) and his brushes with the law. As Dan Cooper wrote for Allmusic.com, “That Paycheck is remembered for a fairly amusical novelty song [“Take This Job And Shove It”] and a violent crime (for which he spent two years in prison) is a shame, for it just so happens that he is one of the mightiest honky tonkers of his time.” Learn about all that and more from Cooper’s piece at Allmusic, then check out his discography.

As you listen to “Slide Off Your Satin Sheets,” think about Tommy Allsup, who played guitar (not sure what part) on the session. He’s a former Cricket — as in “Buddy Holly and the Crickets” — a former Texas Playboy — as in “Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys” — a former member of Asleep at The Wheel, a great guitarist and a record producer. Today’s his 78th birthday.

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