Johnny Paycheck's "tough guy" country persona is captured well on this greatest-hits album. Most of these tunes revolve around hard living, heartache, and trouble with the law. Some of the songs retain the old honky-tonk sound, while others are more modern.
"Me and the I.R.S." is a country-rock tune taken from a live show in the 1970s. Paycheck really gets the crowd whooped up on this anti-I.R.S. rant. His biggest hit, "Take This Job and Shove It," is also included here. This song became something of a rallying cry for underpaid blue-collar workers in the late '70s. Two of the songs, "Colorado Cool-Aid" and "The Outlaw's Prayer," are spoken-word stories with musical accompaniment. "Colorado Cool-Aid" is probably the most fascinating. Here, Paycheck weaves an interesting tale of a big bruiser who picks a fight with a young Mexican boy. With few exceptions, most of these songs revolve around either hell-raising or love's misery. Overall, 16 BIGGEST HITS does a fine job of documenting the Outlaw Country style that Paycheck helped to popularize.
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