Wednesday, April 23, at Ameristar Casino.

Merle Haggard 

Wednesday, April 23, at Ameristar Casino.

You gotta love the Onion. A recent headline in the parody paper summed it up succinctly: "Merle Haggard, haggard." And it's true that the 66-year-old country-music legend has seen better days, but he's still as vital and ornery as anyone with a three-decade string of hits has the right to be. The Oakie from Muskogee's résumé boasts a stint in San Quintin for robbery, but most of his shenanigans during the past thirty years have been musical. Like his celebrated contemporaries (Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, George Jones), Haggard has been virtually ignored by modern radio and continues to earn his living by taking his show on the road. In 2000, he famously signed with Epitaph subsidiary Anti and released the much-lauded If I Could Only Fly, which cemented Haggard's status as one of country's most authentic outlaw voices.

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