Archive for the ‘Merle Haggard’ Category

Willie Nelson and Sheryl Crow, “Today, I Started Loving Her, Again”

Wednesday, July 12th, 2017

Merle Haggard at Willie Nelson’s 4th of July Picnic 2015

Monday, July 3rd, 2017


photo: Janis Tillerson

It would be incredible enough to get to spend the fourth of July with Willie Nelson and his family, and hear the play music, but he always piles it on and turns it into a magical gathering of great musicians. This year, he invited Merle Haggard to perform, and joined him at the end of his set to perform. These photos are from Merle’s set, taken by Janis.

photo: Janis Tillerson

photo: Janis Tillerson



Thank you, Janis from Texas for your great photos.

“He Won’t Ever Be Gone”, by Willie Nelson

Thursday, June 29th, 2017


1. Little House On The Hill (Lyndel Rhodes)
2. Old Timer (Donnie Fritz / Lenny LeBlanc)
3. True Love (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
4. Delete And Fast Forward (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
5. A Woman’s Love (Mike Reid / Sam Hunter)
6. Your Memory Has A Mind Of Its Own (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
7. Butterfly (Sonny Throckmorton / Mark Sherrill)
8. Still Not Dead (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
9. God’s Problem Child (Jamey Johnson / Tony Joe White)
10. It Gets Easier (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
11. Lady Luck (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
12. I Made A Mistake (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
13. He Won’t Ever Be Gone (Gary Nicholson)

Willie & Merle (Cow Palace)

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard, “The Only Man Wilder Than Me

Wednesday, June 7th, 2017
by: Jeff Gage

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard knew a thing or two about catching lightning in a bottle. But when the recording industry was still in its infancy, nearly a century ago, that phrase had a slightly different connotation: In an era that was not only pre-digital but even pre-electrical, musicians only had one chance – roughly three minutes – to record the perfect take. Nelson and Haggard re-create those bygone days in a new clip from the American Epic Sessions documentary, premiering tonight on PBS. (Check local listings.)

American Epic Sessions

How new film traces the evolution of blues, country and more  and reconnects musicians from Nas to Willie Nelson with long-lost recording techniques

American Epic Sessions is the feature-length concert film follow-up to the three-part American Epic documentary, which debuted last month and counts Jack White, T Bone Burnett and Robert Redford among its executive directors. Last month’s series focused on the history of the recording industry from the 1920s and 1930s, chronicling the work of such legendary performers as the Carter Family, Blind Willie Johnson and Lead Belly.

The new American Epic Sessions goes a step further by re-creating those comparatively rudimentary recording environments and having modern-day stars make one-off recordings on the equipment. Engineer Nicholas Bergh reassembled parts from the 1920s, including a pulley-driven recorder that Charley Patton used, to build a vintage, six-foot tall apparatus with a single microphone and live record-cutting lathe.

The star-studded cast of artists who deliver performances include Elton John, Beck, the Avett Brothers, Alabama Shakes, Steve Martin and Edie Brickell, and Taj Mahal, but Nelson and Haggard’s duet seems particularly well-tailored to the concept. They perform “The Only Man Wilder Than Me,” the Hag’s composition that closed out their 2015 LP Django & Jimmie, and it’s a brittle, haunting song that sounds as old and weathered as the equipment itself.

The fact that Haggard has since died only adds heft to the video, particularly given that the work of many of the artists featured in American Epic went largely unappreciated until decades after their deaths.

American Epic Sessions, directed by Bernard McMahon, Allison McGourty and Duke Erickson, airs tonight on PBS at 8:00 p.m. ET, and in the U.K. Friday night on BBC at 11:00 p.m. A soundtrack to the documentary, titled American Epic: The Sessions, will be released by Columbia on June 9th and in triple-LP, 180-gram vinyl form by Third Man Records on June 16th.

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard

Sunday, June 4th, 2017

Merle Haggard and Willie Nelson performing at the Milwaukee Theater. Milwaukee, WI. October 24th, 2015.   Photo by Benjamin Wick.

“He Won’t Ever Be Gone”, by Willie Nelson (from new album, “God’s Problem Child”

Thursday, May 25th, 2017

I love this album.  Every cut.

1. Little House On The Hill (Lyndel Rhodes)
2. Old Timer (Donnie Fritz / Lenny LeBlanc)
3. True Love (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
4. Delete And Fast Forward (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
5. A Woman’s Love (Mike Reid / Sam Hunter)
6. Your Memory Has A Mind Of Its Own (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
7. Butterfly (Sonny Throckmorton / Mark Sherrill)
8. Still Not Dead (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
9. God’s Problem Child (Jamey Johnson / Tony Joe White)
10. It Gets Easier (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
11. Lady Luck (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
12. I Made A Mistake (Willie Nelson / Buddy Cannon)
13. He Won’t Ever Be Gone (Gary Nicholson)

“Music of Merle Haggard” Posters Available

Monday, May 22nd, 2017

[poster does not have “Tickets on Sale” banner]

Purchase Poster here for $35.00

The Music Of Merle Haggard poster is the official screen printed & numbered poster that was sold at the all-star concert event “Sing Me Back Home: The Music Of Merle Haggard”. There are only 350 posters available (650 of 1,000 posters were sold at the event). The posters are screen printed and numbered. Poster size: 12×22, printed on heavy stock.

Note: There are only 30 (number may be less as sales continue) posters remaining of the 1,000 that were made. Order today before these are sold out, once sold out these will never be available again. Due to the limited quantity available, we are limiting 1 poster per order.

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard, “It’s All Going to Pot”

Thursday, April 20th, 2017

Toby Keith, Willie Nelson Tribute Merle Haggard With ‘Ramblin’ Fever’

Monday, April 17th, 2017
by: Carrie Horton

Toby Keith and Willie Nelson teamed up to perform an epic cover of Merle Haggard‘s “Rambin’ Fever” at the Sing Me Back Home: The Music of Merle Haggard tribute concert in Nashville on April 6. Click play above to watch the duo perform Haggard’s 1977 hit, and scroll down to check out a special solo performance from Keith.

Originally released as part of Haggard’s 1977 album of the same name, “Ramblin’ Fever” is characterized by the country icon’s signature songwriting, which reads like a story, and his ability to portray bravado and compassion in the same breath. When lyrics such as “If someone said I ever gave a damn, they damn sure told you wrong” combine with the quavering warble of Haggard’s vocals, listeners can’t help but wonder if he really does care more than he lets on.

During Sing Me Back Home: The Music of Merle Haggard, Nelson made multiple appearances onstage, performing hits from his and Haggard’s 1983 collaborative record Pancho & Lefty as well as solo-Haggard hits such as “Rambin’ Fever.” Along with his appearance with Keith, Nelson also performed “Pancho and Lefty” with Kenny Chesney and “Reasons to Quit” with Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones.

Keith also performed more than once during the special concert event, taking the stage a second time for a solo performance of Haggard’s 1971 chart-topper “Carolyn.” Originally released as the second single from his Someday We’ll Look Back album, the song earned Haggard his 11th No. 1 hit and was the perfect tune for Keith to perform in his honor.

Other artists who took the stage to honor Haggard during Sing Me Back Home: The Music of Merle Haggard included Dierks Bentley, Miranda Lambert, Jake Owen, Chris Janson, Sheryl Crow and Loretta Lynn. A portion of the proceeds from the event benefited the TJ Martell Foundation.

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard, “Pancho and Lefty”

Thursday, April 13th, 2017

Willie Nelson and John Mellencamp in Nashville for Merle Haggard #SingMeBackHome

Monday, April 10th, 2017

— Farm Aid (@FarmAid) April 7, 2017

Board Members Willie Nelson and John Mellencamp in Nashville, to celebrate life and music of Merle Haggard.

Willie Nelson, Keith Richards, “Reason to Quit”

Sunday, April 9th, 2017

Willie Nelson and dozens of others gather to celebrate music of Merle Haggard in Nashville

Sunday, April 9th, 2017

photo:  Joshua Timmerman
by:  Sarah Rodman

Not that anyone needed to be convinced of the depth and breadth of Merle Haggard’s formidable influence — on country music and beyond. But a spectacular case was made for his legacy Thursday night at the Bridgestone Arena here.

One year to the day that Haggard died, more than two dozen artists across genres and multiple generations gathered to pay tribute to the American music legend on what would have been his 80th birthday.

“Sing Me Back Home: The Music of Merle Haggard” featured collaborators and peers (Willie Nelson and Loretta Lynn), younger artists (Miranda Lambert and Kacey Musgraves) who aspire to his authenticity and a bevy of pop and rock acolytes (Keith Richards, John Mellencamp and Sheryl Crow) who cite him as an influence.

From the cheeky swagger of Hank Williams Jr.’s take on “I Think I’ll Just Stay Here and Drink” — a perfect marriage of singer and song — to the delicacy of Alison Krauss’ intonation of “Sing a Sad Song,” with rich harmonic help from the Cox Family, the three-plus-hour show had an air of both celebration and solemnity.

Veteran character actor W. Earl Brown (“Deadwood,” “True Detective”), a fan and friend of Haggard’s, hosted the event with élan and a broad, booming personality well-suited to keeping things moving.

Guitarist Ben Haggard, Merle’s son, anchored the first part of the show, leading his father’s old band, the Strangers, behind a parade of classic artists who still have plenty left in the tank: John Anderson, Bobby Bare, the still-feisty Tanya Tucker and a full-voiced Connie Smith, who did a gorgeous rendition of “That’s the Way Love Goes.”

Among the younger set, Lambert delivered a note-perfect rendition of the melancholic “Misery and Gin,” an occasional favorite of her regular shows. Chris Janson and Jake Owen were among several artists teaming up to pay homage, with an assured version of “Footlights” that found Janson turning out smoky harmonica wails.

Alabama kept it simple and stripped down for a harmony-laden rendition of the rueful “Silver Wings.” Jamey Johnson gave one of the night’s standout performances with “Kern River,” a hushed tale of both menace and sadness that drew huge cheers from the crowd. The estimably beaded Johnson joined forces with Krauss to tip a cap to songwriter Blaze Foley with a poignant duet of “If I Could Only Fly.” Johnson also offered an arm to help Lynn to the stage for her take on “Today I Started Loving You.”

Interspersed between the sets were tribute videos that included one section devoted to Haggard’s side-splitting appearances on vintage talk and variety shows, doing spot-on impersonations of fellow country stars Johnny Cash, Marty Robbins and Bakersfield compadre Buck Owens.

The second set had just as much bang for the buck, including Lynyrd Skynyrd’s stomp through “Honky Tonk Nighttime Man” and a scorching version of “Working Man Blues” from Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top and Warren Haynes of the Allman Brothers and Gov’t Mule.

The Avett Brothers ably motored through “Mama Tried,” Mellencamp and a core crew (including his former drummer, Kenny Aronoff) performed a haunting rendition of the snarling, desperate “White Line Fever” and Crow soared on “Natural High.”

Richards, a late addition to the lineup, emerged and was his typically shambolic self, lending his piratical charm to “Sing Me Back Home,” which the Stone alone recorded in 1977.

“It’s good to be here,” Richards said, adding with a laugh, “or anywhere.” He also made sure to thank the evening’s truly all-star backing band, which included Aronoff, Don Was on bass, Sam Bush on fiddle and mandolin, Mickey Raphael on harmonica and the McCrary Sisters on support vocals.

While the crowd was appreciative of all the performers, the loudest roar was reserved for Haggard’s close friend and collaborator, Willie Nelson, the Pancho to Haggard’s Lefty.

Nelson joined Richards for the ode to bad behavior “Reasons to Quit” and Toby Keith for a raucous “Ramblin’ Fever.” Appropriately enough, Kenny Chesney served as Nelson’s Lefty for the night on the Southwestern-tinged track, a highlight of the Nelson-Haggard canon.

The show came to a rousing conclusion with an all-hands rendition of Haggard’s signature tune “Okie From Muskogee.” It was a particularly fine touch to have Nelson croon the opening line, “We don’t smoke marijuana in Muskogee.”

The concert was recorded for broadcast at a later date on an as-yet-to-be-determined outlet.

“Okie from Muskogee” — stars gather to honor Merle Haggard in Nashville

Sunday, April 9th, 2017