HOLDING THINGS TOGETHER, THE MERLE HAGGARD SONGBOOK
Universally known to his fans and peers as æHagÆ, the late Merle Haggard was one of the prime exponents of the æBakersfield SoundÆ, developed in the early 60s as an alternative to the increasingly smooth and homogenised country music that was coming out of Nashville.As well as having one of the most distinctive and memorable voices of his generation, Haggard was also one of countryÆs most prolific hitmakers and composers, writing more than three quarters of the hundred plus songs he placed on BillboardÆs Country charts between 1962 and 1990, as well as numerous album tracks. HagÆs songs quickly found an audience among his country peers. They also spoke to artists active in other genres, and particularly to the generation of rock musicians who fell under their spell in the late 60s and early 70s,,, and who played them live and/or recorded them frequently.The latest entry in AceÆs æSongwriter SeriesÆ, ôHolding Things Togetherö offers a broad cross-section of premium Hag copyrights, as reinterpreted by artists as diverse as Gram Parsons (in various guises), Bettye Swann, Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Grateful Dead and legendary æSinging CowboyÆ Roy Rogers, to name but a few. Most of the featured songs are famous enough to be recognised by their titles and are rightly considered to be country music classics but as ever, we have unearthed a few lesser known killers û some of which are appearing on CD for the first time. Memorable, frequently moving and always magnificent, they confirm this iconic artistÆs credentials as one of the greatest songwriters of all time, in any genre of music.