Human Emotions was released in 1978 on Columbia Records.
- Would You Lay with Me (in a field of stone)
- If This is just a Game
- You can Count on Me
- Mississippi River Queen
- Tomorrow is Another Day
- Human Emotions
- (she finally crossed over) Love’s Cheating Line
- Whiskey and Women
- Jack Daniels, if you Please
Dedicated to my wife 1976 – 1978 Dear wife, You left me taking our daughter and my dog. You left behind a painting or two including the first painting you ever did. You also left about 30 letters that you had written over the years and never given to me. Unfortunately, I was unable to respond to those letters until now. I realize that the “I” in “me” can never satisfy the “we” in “you”; nor can the “us” in me ever understand the “me” in you. You will find me as hard to forget as I have you, because I am everywhere. If you turn on a radio, you might hear me singing; some day you’ll pick up a magazine or newspaper and turn the page and see my face; or while watching TV I might be on your screen. Even in the movies they could flash my picture as starring in next week’s attraction. No, my love, you will never forget me. And I shall never forget either. That’s HUMAN EMOTIONS. Side one is songs that I wrote before you left me. Side two is songs I wrote after you left me. I decided to call side one “Happy Side” – because I was happy then. We had our new house, our daughter was in school, and you were “the happiest I’ve ever been in my life” – as you told my parents the day before you drew all the money out of the bank and left. “she don’t mean to hurt me, she wants her freedom.” Side two is called “Suicide”. The first three songs I wrote before I knew who you were with and where you had gone. The last two songs I wrote when I got your “Notice of Divorce Proceedings” “married by the Bible she was only sixteen.” There’s an empty feeling in my chest as I write these words…I love you. How silly it seems to say that now. “if she’s meant to hurt me, she’s done it this time.” Love, David PS: Give my love to our daughter
By the end of 1978, outlaw singer/songwriter David Allan Coe had gone through another divorce — one that was apparently very difficult, because he recorded this entire album around the topic. The subtitle of Human Emotions is “Happy Side/Suicide.” Side one is comprised of songs composed — and some recorded — before his wife left; side two is the aftermath. At this time, producer Billy Sherrill had really begun to make his presence felt on David Allan Coe’s records. Ron Bledsoe is still here with his patented honky tonk production style, but the Sherrill ambience creeps in here and gives everything a certain commercial-sounding fullness rather than the space of his earlier records. Human Emotions is a very commercial record that might have done well with radio and in stores had it not been for the positively menacing cover of an aviator-shaded Coe in full biker attire holding an acoustic guitar, next to the skull of an antelope. The album opens with a re-recording of “Would You Lay With Me (In a Field of Stone),” a track Sherrill convinced Coe to redo. This version is not as strong, perhaps because it comes from a place of brokenness rather than the ecstatic font of new love, but it is still an elegant and powerful tome. Human Emotions has plenty of standouts, however, like “You Can Count on Me,” with its irrepressible chorus and phase-shifting guitars, and “Mississippi River Queen,” a country rocker that sounds as if it were written for Hank Williams, Jr.. The title track is a masterpiece, with its syncopated vocal lead lines, country-waltz tempo, and huge backing chorus. There are also the outlaw anthems “Whiskey and Women” (with Janie Fricke on backing vocals) and one of the greatest drinking songs of all time, “Jack Daniels if You Please.” The album finishes on a downer note with the track “Suicide,” but despite its dark theme, Human Emotions is one of Coe’s better efforts in the 1970s.