What could be better than two and a half hours of listening to George Strait, live and in-person? How about the King of Country paying tribute to another country legend affectionately referred to as The Hag? Yes, that’s right, Merle Haggard.
One legend covering another. It’s hardcore country at its finest.
Underneath his signature “don’t mess with me” black hat and freshly starched uniform of a white shirt and blue jeans, Strait shared his emotions, as well as a song by one of his best friends with those who came to adore him. Forty years of making audiences swoon and Strait still has what it takes.
Strait, 66, who declared his semi-retirement in 2017, reminded a packed house of 50,000 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans just why he was dubbed “King George.”
Reeling off hit after hit, fans feasted on tunes like “”Give it Away,” “Check Yes or No,” “Amarillo By Morning,” “The Chair,” “I Cross My Heart,” “Write This Down,” and more.
The fans in the sold-out stadium also knew they were lucky to see one of country music’s most respected performers on stage. These days, Strait limits his performances to a fistful of shows annually.
During those few performances, Strait consistently pays tribute to one of his personal heroes and good friends, Merle Haggard. Though The Hag passed away in 2016 at age 79, his legend and music endure, partially due to his influence on other heavy hitting country fellows, including Strait.
In fact, Strait credits Haggard with convincing him to get into country music, not by anything he said, but more by the way he sang.
The roaring applause undoubtedly celebrated both legends when the King of Country covered “Are The Good Times Really Over?” a song written and recorded by The Hag way back in 1981.
Is it any wonder The King continues to cover The Hag? Here’s to good times, good friends and great country music…
What did you think of the cover by George Strait? Do you think the “Good Times Are Really Over?”