God bless Merle Haggard. He did all the things that Johnny Cash was supposed to have done.— Lewis Grizzard
Cheerful Merle quotations
I really like Alan Jackson, in Country Music. I think he's really very, very talented along with George Jones, and Merle Haggard, the same old favorites.
There's just enough drinking and cheating songs around without me adding to them. Unless you've got something better than "Misery and Gin" by Merle Haggard, you're beating a dead horse.
I went to Brooklyn College and met this beautiful Jewish girl named Merle, with dark hair, exotic looking and brilliant. So we got married and had three children.
And I think it's safe to say that the single very impressive figure to me was Merle Haggard.
Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Merle Haggard, Hank Williams.
All of them are different styles, but those are the songs that make the times. They're the songs that last through time.
I have heard stories that it was love at first sight for both of us, that we disappeared to a guest room at Merle's house, had our meals sent up, and didn't emerge for several days. This is absolutely untrue. I would never behave like that as a guest in someone's home. Carlos and I went to my beach house.
I was mainly influenced by the Carter Family, Jimmie Rodgers, Loretta Lynn, Merle Haggard, and others like Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash.
I had always loved music. I grew up listening to classic country, Waylon Jennings, Merle Haggard. My dad loved Vern Gosdin and Keith Whitley. So I kept going to class and started getting totally into playing guitar and teaching myself these songs.
It's cool when your husband starts to sing some old Merle Haggard song and I can pop in with a harmony and it doesn't sound too bad.
If there ever was a poet for the working class Billy Joe Shaver and Merle Haggard would be my nomination.
We decided to do some of Merle's things with modern instrumentation.
We used a flute, a bass clarinet, a trumpet, a clarinet, drums, a guitar, vibes and a piano.
I think my brand of country music is that's been influenced by not just the rough-stock rodeo side or Ted Nugent's "let's get crazy style", but also the stand-up and sing style's like George Strait and Merle Haggard, and also the wild side of Chris Ledoux
I just got into it like a lot of people through the rock 'n' roll bands in the late '60s that turned to country music, like The Byrds and Buffalo Springfield, but particularly through The Byrds because of Gram Parsons, Roger McGuinn and Chris Hillman (with their 1968 album Sweetheart of the Rodeo). They kind of introduced English kids to Merle Haggard and George Jones and the Louvins (brothers Charlie and Ira).
Around 14, I was turned on to Shania, Reba, Merle Haggard, Garth Brooks, Trisha Yearwood... and I've followed it ever since.
I try to write like the writers I admire - I rip them off in form.
It comes from George Strait and Merle Haggard records, and country music in general is really good at that, the twisted phrase... So Im always looking for that angle in my own work.
My music comes from country music. Merle Haggard is God, and I do believe that. I'm not too tuned in to country music. I don't know who Brooks and Dunn are. I like Shania Twain, though!
The Bowery was a place that would let us do original songs - not just covers - but we would have to work for tips, so we learned how to work an audience. In order to keep our jobs, we had to keep people happy, so that meant playing the latest Lynyrd Skynyrd and ZZ Top or Merle Haggard.
You think back to Tele players, and James Burton was the one who started it all.
He inspired Roy Nichols (guitar for Merle Haggard & the Strangers), Don Rich (guitar for Buck Owens & the Buckaroos), and guys like that to push the envelope and expand on that sound... I really identify with that kind of thinking ... those guys to me are the reason why any of us do this.
In the 80s, in the cover band I was in, we'd slip in original material.
If you didn't say anything about it, people just didn't care. Sometimes they'd ask where that came from and you'd tell them, but you still had to play a bunch of Willie, Waylon, and Merle.
Backstage at the Grand Ole Opry, I got on my knees and told her that I was going to marry her some day. We were both married to someone else at the time. ‘Ring Of Fire’—June and Merle Kilgore wrote that song for me-that’s the way our love affair was. We fell madly in love and we worked together all the time, toured together all the time, and when the tour was over we both had to go home to other people. It hurt.
When I left Merle was wearing a bungalow apron and rolling pie crust.
She came to the door wiping her hands on the apron and kissed me on the mouth and began to cry and ran back into the house, leaving the doorway empty [...] I had a funny feeling as I saw the house disappear, as though I had written a poem and it was very good and I had lost it and would never remember it again. (p. 262)