Who was/is Merle Haggard ? - CDs, Vinyl LPs, DVD and more

Merle Haggard

Sing a Sad Song:

Saying Goodbye to Merle Haggard


by Scott B. Bomar

Merle Haggard, an icon of American music, died at his home in California on Wednesday, April 6, 2016. It was the singer, songwriter, and musician’s 79th birthday. In 2008 he battled lung cancer, and was hospitalized in December 2015 with double pneumonia. Haggard returned to the stage soon after, but was sidelined again in February due to continuing health concerns. “A week ago Dad told us he was gonna pass on his birthday,” Merle’s son and lead guitarist, Ben, revealed the day his father died, “and he wasn’t wrong.”

Merle Ronald Haggard was born April 6, 1937 in Bakersfield, California. Following his father’s death in 1945, Merle grew restless and rebellious. Several brushes with the law ultimately landed him in San Quentin prison in 1958. Following his release in 1960, Merle returned to Bakersfield, where he worked at manual labor jobs during the day. In the evenings he paid his dues in the same local honky tonks that sculpted the early career of fellow Bakersfield Sound pioneer Buck Owens.

Merle eventually signed with Bakersfield’s tiny Tally label, releasing a handful of singles before signing with Capitol Records in 1965. During his decade-long stint with Capitol, Haggard scored more than two dozen #1 country hits, including “Branded Man,” “Mama Tried,” “Okie From Muskogee,” “If We Make it Through December,” and “The Roots of My Raising.” Subsequent stints with the MCA and Epic labels yielded additional #1 hits, including “I Think I’ll Just Stay Here and Drink,” “My Favorite Memory,” “Big City,” and “Going Where the Lonely Go.” He was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1994, and continued to record for various labels, releasing his final studio album, Working in Tennessee, in 2011.

The celebrated “poet of the common man” frequently explored themes of restlessness, determination, stubborn individuality, responsibility, hard work, and a longing for personal freedom. His gift for capturing the spirit and struggles of the working class earned him a reputation as one of the great American songwriters in the tradition of Woody Guthrie and Bob Dylan. Beyond his mastery of lyrics and melody, Haggard was an accomplished multi-instrumentalist and nuanced vocalist who set a new bar in country music for both twangy barn-burners and tender jazz-tinged ballads. “He wasn’t just a country singer,” son Ben added. “He was the best country singer that ever lived.”

Haggard reached the Top 10 on the Billboard Country Singles chart more than 70 times between 1966 and 1989. Nearly 40 of those songs climbed all the way to the #1 spot. Beyond the hits, Haggard released 54 studio albums as a solo act, 10 collaborative albums with other artists, 11 live releases, and 5 additional studio albums spotlighting his legendary band, the Strangers. He won more than two dozen awards from the Academy of Country Music and the Country Music Association, as well as three Grammy awards. Haggard was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame and, in 2010, was honored by the prestigious Kennedy Center for “outstanding contribution to American culture.”

“I want to die along the highway” Haggard sang in his 1977 hit “Ramblin’ Fever.” The legendary road warrior almost pulled it off. “It’s what keeps me alive and it’s what fucks up my life,” Merle said of touring in a 2016 interview with Matt Hendrickson. Although he had little interest in the trappings of celebrity, Haggard loved to sing and play. Bringing his music to his fans fueled him to the very end. His passing marks not only the end of a remarkable career, but the death of an icon who ranks with Ray Charles, Johnny Cash, Miles Davis, and John Lennon as a musical force who forever changed the face of music.              

 

 

Copyright © Bear Family Records®. Copying, also of extracts, or any other form of reproduction, including the adaptation into electronic data bases and copying onto any data mediums, in English or in any other language is permissible only and exclusively with the written consent of Bear Family Records® GmbH.

More information about Merle Haggard on Wikipedia.org

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Mama Tried - 180g Vinyl - Limited Edition
Merle Haggard: Mama Tried - 180g Vinyl - Limited Edition Art-Nr.: CAP98169

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(2009/CAPITOL) 12 tracks Stereo
$24.33
Collector's Steelbox Edition - Sony (3-CD)
Merle Haggard: Collector's Steelbox Edition - Sony (3-CD) Art-Nr.: CD53775

This article is deleted and can no longer be ordered!

(2008/SONY BMG) 32 tracks 1981-94 (Super Hits/Greatest Hits Of The 80s/Big City) 12 page booklet
$28.18
Roots (CD)
Merle Haggard: Roots (CD) Art-Nr.: CDANTI6634

This article is deleted and can no longer be ordered!

(2001/Anti Inc.) 12 tracks (34:57) nice slipcase packaging with 12 page booklet. Now deleted album of timeless Country Music gems, including milestones from Hank, Lefty and others. - nice price offer -
$11.26 $19.18
I'm A Lonesome Fugitive - Mama Tried
Merle Haggard: I'm A Lonesome Fugitive - Mama Tried Art-Nr.: CDBGO328

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$11.26 $21.39
Legend Of Bonnie & Clyde - Pride In What I Am (CD)
Merle Haggard: Legend Of Bonnie & Clyde - Pride In What I Am (CD) Art-Nr.: CDBGO547

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​(2002/BGO) 23 Tracks - 1968-1969!
$20.31
Someday We'll Look Back & I Love Dixie Blues (CD)
Merle Haggard: Someday We'll Look Back & I Love Dixie Blues (CD) Art-Nr.: CDBGO596

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(2004/BGO) 26 tracks 1971/73
$14.66 $21.39
His 30th Album - A Working Man Can't Get Nowhere Today (CD)
Merle Haggard: His 30th Album - A Working Man Can't Get... Art-Nr.: CDBGO640

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(2004/BGO) 21 tracks 1974/77
$20.31
Collector's Steelbox Edition - Curb (3-CD)
Merle Haggard: Collector's Steelbox Edition - Curb (3-CD) Art-Nr.: CDD279055

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(2008/CURB9 33 tracks 199-2000 (Number One Songs/Best Of The 90s Vol. 1&2)
$28.18
Strangers - Swinging Doors And The Bottle Let Me Down (CD)
Merle Haggard: Strangers - Swinging Doors And The Bottle Let... Art-Nr.: CDEMI48022

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CD on EMI RECORDS by Merle Haggard - Strangers - Swinging Doors And The Bottle Let Me Down
$11.26
Just Between The Two Of Us
Merle Haggard & Bonnie Owens: Just Between The Two Of Us Art-Nr.: CDKING5119

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(2000/EMI/KING) 12 tracks
$10.07
The Lonesome Fugitive - The Merle Haggard  Anthology 1963-77 (2-CD)
Merle Haggard: The Lonesome Fugitive - The Merle Haggard... Art-Nr.: CDRAZ2059

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​(1995/Razor & Tie) 40 tracks
$28.24
Live At Billy Bob's Texas
Merle Haggard: Live At Billy Bob's Texas Art-Nr.: CDSTHM5031

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(2004/SMITH) 15 tracks
$18.05
Legendary Performances (0)
Merle Haggard: Legendary Performances (0) Art-Nr.: DVD0808001

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(2008/CMF/SHOUT) NTSC, Code 0, 65 Minutes, 15 rare performances 1968- 1983 plus unreleased interview footage & Hall Of Fame induction 1994.
$21.39
Live From Austin TX 1978 (0)
Merle Haggard: Live From Austin TX 1978 (0) Art-Nr.: DVDNW8060

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(2006/NEW WEST) 15 tracks, recorded live in Austin, Texas in 1985 for the legendary TV show!! Re-mixed and re-mastered in stereo!
$21.39
Live At Billy Bob's Texas (1)
Merle Haggard: Live At Billy Bob's Texas (1) Art-Nr.: DVDSMG6031

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(2004/SMG) NTSC, Color, 21 tracks plus bonus material;
$24.78
Branded Man - Featuring 20Top10 Country Hits
Merle Haggard: Branded Man - Featuring 20Top10 Country Hits Art-Nr.: EG2605291

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(1985/EMI GB) 20 Capitol masters 1965-71
$16.41
25th Anniversary Album
Merle Haggard: 25th Anniversary Album Art-Nr.: EMS1313

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(1988/EMI GB) 20 tracks, 1965-76
$15.28
I Am What I Am
Merle Haggard: I Am What I Am Art-Nr.: LP78035

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(2010/VANGUARD) 12 tracks - limited quantities
$28.24
Working In Tennessee (2011)
Merle Haggard: Working In Tennessee (2011) Art-Nr.: LP78208

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$25.46
Swinging Doors
HAGGARD, Merle: Swinging Doors Art-Nr.: LPSEE68

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​(1986/See For Miles) Reproduction of the 1966 Capitol album!
$15.28
The Hag
Merle Haggard: The Hag Art-Nr.: DVDCCMH001

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(2014/Classic Country) NTSC, Code 0, Color, 103 Mins. Merle Haggard, The Hag. Over 30 songs by the legendary Merle Haggard…plus bonus songs with the Strangers, Porter Wagoner and a tribute to Bob Wills. This very special DVD contains...
$14.66
Merle Haggard & Mac Wiseman - Timeless (Special Edition)
Merle Haggard And Mac Wiseman: Merle Haggard & Mac Wiseman - Timeless (Special... Art-Nr.: CDHAG0020

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(Hag/Cracker Barrel) 13 tracks (42:33) superb, mostly acoustic session featuring Carl Jackson (gtr), Rob Ickes (dobro), Aubrey Haney (fiddle), Vince Gill (vocal on track 2 and 10) and many others. Recorded at Star Struck Studios,...
$24.84
Live On The Silver Eagle Radio Show (CD)
Merle Haggard: Live On The Silver Eagle Radio Show (CD) Art-Nr.: CDHS1015

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(Hotspur) 24 tracks - 8 page booklet. - By the time Merle Haggard played Nashville's Opryland theme park in 1982, he had a decade and a half of country stardom under his belt. He draws on one of the deepest repertoires in popular music...
$11.26 $16.92
From The King To The Barrooms (CD)
Merle Haggard: From The King To The Barrooms (CD) Art-Nr.: CDHUMP017

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(Hump Head) 24 tracks (73:00) with 16 page booklet including all lyrics. From The King To The Barroooms brings together some of Merle Haggard's best loved songs, together with a selection of his Elvis covers. This compilation includes...
$13.52 $14.66