Born: Apr 6 , 1937 in Bakersfield, CA
Instruments: Fiddle, Guitar, Vocals
Style: Traditional Country, Bakersfield Sound,
Western Swing Revival
|As a performer and a songwriter, Merle Haggard was the most important country artist to emerge in the 1960s. Haggard became one of the leading figures of the Bakersfield country scene in the '60s. While his music remained hardcore country, he pushed the boundaries of the music quite far. Like his idol Bob Wills, his music was a melting pot that drew from all forms of traditional American music -- country, jazz, blues, and folk -- and in the process, developed a distinctive style of his own. As a performer, singer, and musician, he was one of the best, influencing countless other artists. Not coincidentally, he was the best singer/songwriter in country music since Hank Williams, writing a body of songs that became classics. Throughout his career, Haggard has been a champion of the working man, largely due to his rough and tumble history.|
|1967 began a remarkable streak of 37 straight Top Ten hits, including 23 number one singles.
"I Threw Away the Rose" was followed by four straight number one hits - "Branded Man," "Sing Me Back Home," "The Legend of Bonnie and Clyde," and "Mama Tried"...
continued @ All-Music Guide
|Merle @ CountryStars.com If the question were asked, “Who forged the genre that is known today as ‘modern country music?’,” only a tiny group of country immortals could step forward to share the spotlight. One, out of that select handful, would be Merle Haggard. Merle wasn’t in the delivery room on the morning country music was born; it simply seems like he was. And you won’t hear anybody refer to him as the father of country music. But many will swear he’s at least its godfather.|
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