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Haggard gets tribute treatment from ex-wife, Leona Williams

Thursday, June 19, 2008 – Merle Haggard is getting the tribute treatment from perhaps an unlikely source - his ex-wife. Leona Williams released "Leona Williams Sings Merle Haggard" on the recently formed Ah-Ha Music label. The disc is available on-line.

Williams helped write some of the songs, including "You Take Me For Granted." In the late 70's Williams first teamed up with Haggard to record "The Bull and the Beaver"; the song became a top 10 hit. The duo then followed it up with the album "Heart to Heart." The duo married a few years later and although they divorced in 1984, they remain friends.

A private album release/preview party will take place, appropriately, at the Musicians Hall of Fame in Nashville on Thursday, June 19 and Williams will perform for the public the following night at the Nashville Palace. Country fans will be treated to additional performances by Ah-Ha Music label mates Crystal Sands and Carl Ray.

Williams has also written several songs for other well-known artists including Willie Nelson, Loretta Lynn, George Jones, Merle Haggard, Randy Travis and Connie Smith.

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CD reviews

Working in Tennessee CD review - Working in Tennessee
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I Am What I Am CD review - I Am What I Am
It seems that the legendary country artists who survive to their later years, often make some of their best music during that time. It certainly was true with Johnny Cash and apparently Merle Haggard is primed to follow suit. The evidence of that is spread all over his new 12-song outing. Haggard has gone introspective, but he has done it in such a way that most of the songs are easy for the listeners to apply to their own experiences. The opener, I've Seen It Go Away, is about losing the »»»
Legendary Performances DVD CD review - Legendary Performances DVD
The Strangers are a talented and extremely flexible band, as Haggard's mood can vary from showing off his rich singing voice on ballads to playing the jazzy guitar hero via Western swing material. Thus, it takes a multi-faceted combo, like The Strangers, to keep up with Haggard's many moods. This disc collects 15 Haggard TV clips, and the man is definitely not lip synching his way through these performances. For instance, viewers can clearly hear The Hag clear his throat right before »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk – When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: Carlile warms hearts with empathetic thoughts – Brandi Carlile, dressed festively with a Santa hat, began her mid-week concert set with Joni Mitchell's "River" and closed with the carol "O Holy Night." In between, she sang about an equal measure of old and new songs. And on this first night of a short acoustic tour, Carlile was both in fine spirits and voice.... »»»
Concert Review: Daniels wears out bows, but music endures – After each of the first few songs Charlie Daniels played, his 'fiddle tech (?)' exchanged his bow. Is this because he was playing particularly hard? Perhaps. Whatever the case, Daniels and his five-piece band clearly appeared to be giving it their all during the act's hour-and-a-half set. As it is the Christmas month, Daniels sang a... »»»
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