Archive for the ‘Merle Haggard’ Category

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard, “It’s All Going to Pot (whether we like it or not)”

Thursday, February 4th, 2016

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard, “Django and Jimmie” (Rolling Stone Interview June 2015)

Thursday, February 4th, 2016

blackhats

www.RollingStone.com
by:  Patrick Doyle

“Hello, I know you!” Merle Haggard says as he emerges from the bedroom of his tour bus. He’s talking to Willie Nelson, who’s sitting in the bus’s cramped front quarters. Standing nearby, Nelson’s wife, Annie, asks the pair if they’ll sign a couple of acoustic guitars for a charity run by Matthew McConaughey, a friend of the family. “Absolutely not,” Haggard says with a smile. Later, when Annie takes a photo of the two signing the guitars, Nelson grins and gives the camera the finger.

It’s a perfect Saturday night in South Texas, where Haggard, 78, and Nelson, 82, are playing the last of three sold-out shows together at New Braunfels’ Whitewater Amphitheater. Haggard is about to play a set, during which Nelson will join him on “Okie From Muskogee,” “Pancho and Lefty” and a handful of other songs. Backstage, Nelson family members catch up; his rail-thin 90-year-old roadie Ben Dorcy (who was once John Wayne’s assistant) ambles around, smoking a pipe. Directly behind the stage, locals ride down the Guadalupe River in inner tubes, stopping on the bank to listen to the show. “We’ll get somebody out there to sell them tickets,” Nelson jokes.

Sitting side by side on the bus, Nelson and Haggard look like they could be a grizzled Mount Rushmore of country music. “It’s a mutual-admiration society with us,” says Nelson. “Merle’s one of the best. There’s not anyone out there that can beat him. Maybe Kris Kristofferson. But then you start running out of names.”

Haggard and Nelson are about to release a new LP, Django and Jimmie. (The title is a tribute to Nelson’s and Haggard’s respective heroes, Django Reinhardt and Jimmie Rodgers.)

One of the best songs is “Missing Ol’ Johnny Cash,” an ode to their late friend and a meditation on mortality. “There’s a thousand good stories about John,” says Nelson. Haggard tells one, about the time Cash thought it would be hilarious to dynamite a broken-down car he encountered on the side of the road. “He hooks it all up, hits the plunger and blows it up. And he said, ‘Now, when that guy goes to tell his old lady his car blew up, he won’t be lying!’?” Nelson cackles, adding, “John used to say, ‘I always get my best thinking done when June is talking.’?”

“I didn’t know anything about marijuana,” Haggard says. “It’s fantastic.”

Nelson and Haggard met at a poker game at Nelson’s Nashville house in 1964, when both were struggling songwriters. (Neither would have major success until they left Nashville behind; Nelson for Austin, Haggard for Bakersfield, California.) They didn’t become close until the late Seventies, when they were playing casinos in Reno. “We’d play a couple of long shows a day, then spend all night long jamming,” says Haggard.

In 1982, they recorded Pancho & Lefty together at Nelson’s ranch near Austin, where they’d stay awake for days — “We were living pretty hard in that time period,” Nelson has said — playing golf and then recording all night (Haggard barely remembers singing his famous verse on “Pancho and Lefty”). At the time, they were fasting on a master-cleanse regimen of cayenne pepper and lemon juice. “I think Willie went 10 days,” says Haggard. “I went seven.”

“I still ain’t got over it,” says Nelson. “Still hungry.” Adds Haggard, “You’re still high!”

These days, they share a love of conspiracy theories (both are devoted fans of paranormal-obsessed radio host Art Bell) and making music with their children (Haggard’s son Ben plays guitar in his band; Nelson’s sons Lukas and Micah frequently join their father onstage). “It’s as good as it gets, to have your kids up there playing,” says Nelson. “And they’re good!”

On the new album, the two cover Bob Dylan’s “Don’t Think Twice (It’s Alright).” The track was recorded before Dylan criticized Haggard and other artists in a widely publicized MusicCares speech in February: “Merle Haggard didn’t think much of my songs, but Buck Owens did,” Dylan said. “Buck Owens and Merle Haggard? If you have to have somebody’s blessing — you figure it out.” Dylan later apologized.

Haggard (who toured with Dylan in 2005) thinks Dylan was talking about the Merle Haggard of the Sixties — the guy who took shots at hippies, weed and premarital sex in 1969’s “Okie From Muskogee.”

“I didn’t misunderstand Bob,” says Haggard. “I know what he meant. He figured I was lumping him in with hippies [in the Sixties]. The lack of respect for the American military hurt my feelings at the time. But I never lumped Bob Dylan in with the hippies. What made him great was the fact that every body liked him. And I’ll tell you one thing, the goddamn hippies have got no exclusive on Bob Dylan!” He pauses. “Bob likes to box — I’d like to get in the ring with his ass, and give him somebody to hit.”

In fact, these days Merle Haggard is far more liberal than the man in his classic songs. For one thing, he loves pot. “I didn’t know anything about marijuana back then,” he says. “It’s one of the most fantastic things in the world.” Did he and Nelson smoke in the studio? “Are you kidding me?” Haggard says with a laugh.

Soon, the conversation devolves to jokes. “You know what you call a guitar player without a girlfriend?” Nelson asks. “Homeless.”

Next, they talk current events, Nelson explaining the “Blurred Lines” lawsuit to Haggard. (“They stole more than they were supposed to,” he says. Haggard nods.) Asked if either has any thoughts about communicating with fans through social media, they shake their heads. “Just so long as somebody else can do it,” says Nelson. “That’s why I didn’t learn to play steel guitar.”

“What was that little girl that played steel in Asleep at the Wheel?” says Haggard. “Cindy Cashdollar. Everybody was trying to look up her dress.”

“Oh, I wouldn’t do that,” deadpans Nelson. “I think I had the wrong angle.”

By now, Haggard is supposed to be onstage; his son has been extending his three-song warm-up set for several minutes, telling the crowd his father will be out soon. These co-headline dates sold so well that Nelson says there will be more: “In fact, I was talking to some folks today — I was gonna see what they thought of making us do a tour of it when it comes out.”

He turns to Haggard. “We ought to do whatever we can get — as many days as we need to,” Nelson says with a smile. “Because I know it’s a good record. I think it might sell a couple.”

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/features/willie-nelson-and-merle-haggard-pancho-and-lefty-ride-again-20150526#ixzz3zDqvM1Wu
Follow us: @rollingstone on Twitter | RollingStone on Facebook

Thursday, February 4th, 2016

blackhats

www.rollingstone.com
by:  Patrick Doyle

“Hello, I know you!” Merle Haggard says as he emerges from the bedroom of his tour bus. He’s talking to Willie Nelson, who’s sitting in the bus’s cramped front quarters. Standing nearby, Nelson’s wife, Annie, asks the pair if they’ll sign a couple of acoustic guitars for a charity run by Matthew McConaughey, a friend of the family. “Absolutely not,” Haggard says with a smile. Later, when Annie takes a photo of the two signing the guitars, Nelson grins and gives the camera the finger.

It’s a perfect Saturday night in South Texas, where Haggard, 78, and Nelson, 82, are playing the last of three sold-out shows together at New Braunfels’ Whitewater Amphitheater. Haggard is about to play a set, during which Nelson will join him on “Okie From Muskogee,” “Pancho and Lefty” and a handful of other songs. Backstage, Nelson family members catch up; his rail-thin 90-year-old roadie Ben Dorcy (who was once John Wayne’s assistant) ambles around, smoking a pipe. Directly behind the stage, locals ride down the Guadalupe River in inner tubes, stopping on the bank to listen to the show. “We’ll get somebody out there to sell them tickets,” Nelson jokes.

Sitting side by side on the bus, Nelson and Haggard look like they could be a grizzled Mount Rushmore of country music. “It’s a mutual-admiration society with us,” says Nelson. “Merle’s one of the best. There’s not anyone out there that can beat him. Maybe Kris Kristofferson. But then you start running out of names.”

Haggard and Nelson are about to release a new LP, Django and Jimmie. (The title is a tribute to Nelson’s and Haggard’s respective heroes, Django Reinhardt and Jimmie Rodgers.)

One of the best songs is “Missing Ol’ Johnny Cash,” an ode to their late friend and a meditation on mortality. “There’s a thousand good stories about John,” says Nelson. Haggard tells one, about the time Cash thought it would be hilarious to dynamite a broken-down car he encountered on the side of the road. “He hooks it all up, hits the plunger and blows it up. And he said, ‘Now, when that guy goes to tell his old lady his car blew up, he won’t be lying!’?” Nelson cackles, adding, “John used to say, ‘I always get my best thinking done when June is talking.’?”

“I didn’t know anything about marijuana,” Haggard says. “It’s fantastic.”

Nelson and Haggard met at a poker game at Nelson’s Nashville house in 1964, when both were struggling songwriters. (Neither would have major success until they left Nashville behind; Nelson for Austin, Haggard for Bakersfield, California.) They didn’t become close until the late Seventies, when they were playing casinos in Reno. “We’d play a couple of long shows a day, then spend all night long jamming,” says Haggard.

In 1982, they recorded Pancho & Lefty together at Nelson’s ranch near Austin, where they’d stay awake for days — “We were living pretty hard in that time period,” Nelson has said — playing golf and then recording all night (Haggard barely remembers singing his famous verse on “Pancho and Lefty”). At the time, they were fasting on a master-cleanse regimen of cayenne pepper and lemon juice. “I think Willie went 10 days,” says Haggard. “I went seven.”

“I still ain’t got over it,” says Nelson. “Still hungry.” Adds Haggard, “You’re still high!”

These days, they share a love of conspiracy theories (both are devoted fans of paranormal-obsessed radio host Art Bell) and making music with their children (Haggard’s son Ben plays guitar in his band; Nelson’s sons Lukas and Micah frequently join their father onstage). “It’s as good as it gets, to have your kids up there playing,” says Nelson. “And they’re good!”

On the new album, the two cover Bob Dylan’s “Don’t Think Twice (It’s Alright).” The track was recorded before Dylan criticized Haggard and other artists in a widely publicized MusicCares speech in February: “Merle Haggard didn’t think much of my songs, but Buck Owens did,” Dylan said. “Buck Owens and Merle Haggard? If you have to have somebody’s blessing — you figure it out.” Dylan later apologized.

Haggard (who toured with Dylan in 2005) thinks Dylan was talking about the Merle Haggard of the Sixties — the guy who took shots at hippies, weed and premarital sex in 1969’s “Okie From Muskogee.”

“I didn’t misunderstand Bob,” says Haggard. “I know what he meant. He figured I was lumping him in with hippies [in the Sixties]. The lack of respect for the American military hurt my feelings at the time. But I never lumped Bob Dylan in with the hippies. What made him great was the fact that every body liked him. And I’ll tell you one thing, the goddamn hippies have got no exclusive on Bob Dylan!” He pauses. “Bob likes to box — I’d like to get in the ring with his ass, and give him somebody to hit.”

In fact, these days Merle Haggard is far more liberal than the man in his classic songs. For one thing, he loves pot. “I didn’t know anything about marijuana back then,” he says. “It’s one of the most fantastic things in the world.” Did he and Nelson smoke in the studio? “Are you kidding me?” Haggard says with a laugh.

Soon, the conversation devolves to jokes. “You know what you call a guitar player without a girlfriend?” Nelson asks. “Homeless.”

Next, they talk current events, Nelson explaining the “Blurred Lines” lawsuit to Haggard. (“They stole more than they were supposed to,” he says. Haggard nods.) Asked if either has any thoughts about communicating with fans through social media, they shake their heads. “Just so long as somebody else can do it,” says Nelson. “That’s why I didn’t learn to play steel guitar.”

“What was that little girl that played steel in Asleep at the Wheel?” says Haggard. “Cindy Cashdollar. Everybody was trying to look up her dress.”

“Oh, I wouldn’t do that,” deadpans Nelson. “I think I had the wrong angle.”

By now, Haggard is supposed to be onstage; his son has been extending his three-song warm-up set for several minutes, telling the crowd his father will be out soon. These co-headline dates sold so well that Nelson says there will be more: “In fact, I was talking to some folks today — I was gonna see what they thought of making us do a tour of it when it comes out.”

He turns to Haggard. “We ought to do whatever we can get — as many days as we need to,” Nelson says with a smile. “Because I know it’s a good record. I think it might sell a couple.”

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/features/willie-nelson-and-merle-haggard-pancho-and-lefty-ride-again-20150526#ixzz3zDqvM1Wu
Follow us: @rollingstone on Twitter | RollingStone on Facebook

 

Willie Nelson & Merle Haggard show in Cherokee, NC (5/21/2016)

Monday, January 25th, 2016

wmm

A new show date was just announced with Merle Haggard, 5/21/16 at Harrah’s Cherokee in Cherokee, NC. Tickets go on sale to the public on Friday, January 29th.

cherokee

Premium Packages and presale tickets for Club Luck members are available starting tomorrow, January 26th at 10am ET. Not a Club Luck member? You can join today: fanclub.willienelson.com

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard add new dates to 2016 Tour

Tuesday, January 12th, 2016

wmm

www.WillieNelson.com

Willie and Merle Haggard have announced four new show dates. Tickets go on sale to the public Friday, January 15th.

Premium Packages and Fan Club Presale Tickets go on sale Tuesday, January 12th @ 10am venue time.

April-8
O’Reilly Event Center in Springfield, MO
April-11
Silverstein Eye Centers Arena in Independence, MO
April-12
Hartman Arena in Park City, KS
April-13
Enid Event Center in Enid, OK
You can access your fan club presale tickets by using your unique presale code, found after you login to the Fan Club website.

If you have any questions or difficulty participating in the pre-sales, please reach out to fanclub@onelivemedia.com and they will be happy to assist you!

Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, “Missing ‘ole Johnny Cash”

Monday, January 11th, 2016

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This day in Willie Nelson History: Willie Nelson, Sheryl Crow & friends honor Merle Haggard (Dec. 28, 2010 )

Monday, December 28th, 2015

On Dec 28, 2010, Willie Nelson, Sheryl Crow, Kris Kristofferson, Jamey Johnson, Kid Rock, Miranda Lambert, Vince Gill, Brad Paisley play to honor Merle Haggard in the CBS telecast of “The Kennedy Center Honors.” Video taped earlier in the month.

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Spin Magazine Picks Their Best Country Songs of 2015

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2015

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Willie Nelson and Kacey Musgraves

www.spin.com

In 2015, country saw its usual mix of warmly welcomed returns from legends like Dwight Yoakam, Patty Griffin, and Willie Nelson with Merle Haggard (together!), as well as breakouts from new stars like Kelsea Ballerini, Cam, and Brothers Osborne. But if the year could be defined by one trend, it would be by the artists who split the difference — the long-suffering behind-the-scenes country vets who finally stepped out as solo acts.

Songwriters like Chris Stapleton, Chris Janson, Sam Hunt, the Old Dominionsupergroup — even the already-minted Kacey Musgraves scribed hits for Miranda Lambert and Nashville before having any of her own — all got their moment in the spotlight in 2015, and turns out they could’ve been leads all along. It’s enough to make you wonder if the Big Machine of country needs rejiggering — though there were enough great factory-style hits cranked out by Thomas Rhett, Jake Owen, and Jana Kramer to suggest that maybe there’s room for both methods

8. Willie Nelson & Merle Haggard, “It’s All Going to Pot”

Did it really take these two Highwaymen a combined century of songwriting to finally come up with that title? “It’s All Going to Pot” works its central conceit from about a half-dozen different, equally chortling directions, ending up with a song that’s as snide and cynical as it is winking and celebratory. The message, as always: If the apocalypse is really on its way, make sure that you’re too stoned and strung out on mariachi horns to give a damn anyway. — A.U.

33. Kacey Musgraves feat. Willie Nelson, “Are You Sure?”

Nice bar, right? The tequila’s a little warm, but the beer’s plenty cold and the floor ain’t too sticky. And the live entertainment is about as good as it gets this deep in the Chihuahuan Desert: two for the price of one! I mean, right, it’s not quite a Loretta/Conway match made in heaven, the octogenarian’s grizzled visage merely a fine complement to the relative kiddo’s Opry-approved crystalline phrasing. But they sure make a cute couple on a slow West Texas waltz yanked from the days when Willie was a songwriter first and foremost, good old Trigger nudging between choruses while that pedal steel soars alongside Kacey into the evening sky. — JASON GUBBELS

Read the other picks:
http://www.spin.com/2015/12/the-40-best-country-songs-of-2015/

 

Willie Nelson & Merle Haggard in Concert in Cape Girardeau, Missouri on April 7, 2015

Saturday, December 19th, 2015

wmy

http://www.showmecenter.biz

Willie Nelson together in concert with Merle Haggard

Thursday, April 7, 2016 at 7:00 p.m.

Willie Nelson:

With a six-decade career and 200 plus albums, this iconic Texan is the creative genius behind the historic recordings of Crazy, Red Headed Stranger, and Stardust. Willie Nelson has earned every conceivable award as a musician and amassed reputable credentials as an author, actor and activist. He continues to thrive as a relevant and progressive musical and cultural force.

In 2013, Willie’s albums included Let’s Face The Music And Dance, an album of deep pop country repertoire classics performed with transformative patented ease by Nelson and Family, his long-time touring and recording ensemble; and To All The Girls… which features 18 duets with music’s top female singers. In 2014, he released Band of Brothers, a 14-track studio album of new recording that debuted at #5 on Billboard’s Top 200 album chart and #1 on Billboard’s Country album char. This year he adds two more titles. On May 5, 2015, “It’s A Long Story: My Life,” the unvarnished and complete story of Willie, hit bookshelves and landed him on the New York Times’ bestsellers list. In June, a new album with Merle Haggard titled Django And Jimmie, debuted at #1 on Billboard‘s Country album chart and #7 on Billboard‘s Top 200 album chart.

Merle Haggard

The word “legend” usually makes an appearance at some point when discussing Merle Haggard. It’s an acknowledgment of his artistry and his standing as “the poet of the common man.” It’s a tribute to his incredible commercial success and to the lasting mark he has made, not just on country music, but on American music as a whole. It’s apt in every way but one.

The term imposes an aura of loftiness that’s totally at odds with the grit and heart of Haggard’s songs. “I’d be more comfortable with something like “professor,” he once told a reporter, and the description suits him. Studying, analyzing and observing the details of life around him, Haggard relays what he sees, hears and feels through his songs. The lyrics are deceptively simple, the music exceptionally listenable. Others who have lived through those same situations recognize the truth in the stories he tells. But Haggard’s real gift is that anyone who hears his songs recognizes the truth in them. When a Merle Haggard song plays, it can make an innocent-as-apple-pie grandma understand the stark loneliness and self-loathing of a prisoner on death row; a rich kid who never wanted for any material possession get a feel for the pain of wondering where the next meal will come from; a tee-totaling pillar of the community sympathize with the poor heartbroken guy downing shots at the local bar.

As a result, Haggard found his songs at the top of the charts on a regular basis. Immediately embraced by country fans, he also earned the respect of his peers. In addition to the 40 #1 hits included here, Haggard charted scores of Top Ten songs. He won just about every music award imaginable, both as a performer and as a songwriter, and in 1994 was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. His body of work easily places him beside Hank Williams as one of the most influential artists in country music.

DOORS OPEN: 6:00 PM

TICKET PRICES: $69.75, $59.75, $49.75

Seating Map

Willie Nelson Fan Club Pre-Sale Tickets to Shows

Tuesday, December 15th, 2015

Well hello there Club Luck members!

Three shows have just been announced and Fan Club members have first access at tickets, before they go on sale to the public.You can access your fan club presale tickets by logging in to the fan club and finding the show on the tour schedule.

www.WillieNelson.com

February 13, 2016
Horseshoe Casino in Bossier City, LA
Pre-sale tickets and Premium packages go on sale Tuesday, 12/15 @ 10am

April 7, 2016
Show Me Center in Cape Giradeau, MO
with Merle Haggard
Pre-sale tickets and Premium packages go on sale Wed, 12/16 @ 10am

April 9, 2016
Peabody Opera House in St. Louis, MO
*with Merle Haggard
Pre-sale tickets and Premium packages go on sale Tuesday, 12/15 @ 10am.

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard in concert in St. Louis (April 9, 2015)

Monday, December 14th, 2015

merlwi

www.Stltoday.com

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard team up for a tour coming to Peabody Opera House on April 9.

Show time is at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are $56.50-$122 and go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday at Ticketmaster outlet, ticketmaster.com, 800-745-3000 and at the Scottrade Center box office.

Get more information at peabodyoperahouse.com.

Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, “A Horse Called Music”

Thursday, December 3rd, 2015

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard, “Django and Jimmie”

Sunday, November 15th, 2015

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photos:  Benford Stanley

Sound check and a show on the historic Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard Django and Jimmie tour to honor Django Reinhardt and Jimmie Rodgers.

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www.JimmieRodgersSaga.com

Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, “Pancho and Lefty” (New Braunfels, Tx) (3/27/15)

Friday, November 13th, 2015

Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, “Don’t Think Twice (it’s all right)”

Wednesday, October 28th, 2015