In between his hits, Merle Haggard made albums that paid tribute to the musicians who influenced him, such as Jimmie Rodgers, Lefty Frizzell and Bob Wills. This was out of respect rather than commercial calculation.
Haggard blended elements of jazz, rock, blues and folk music into his arrangements, while staying true to the traditions of country. No matter what the current fashion of the moment was in music, he always went his own way.
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