Texas Hill Country News

Willie Nelson Honors Merle Haggard: It Will Leave You Speechless

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Willie Nelson’s music moves us all in ways that can hardly be put into words. Just when you think Willie may be hanging his hat up, he surprises us in his usual legendary form. April 6, 2017, marked the release of Willie’s touching tribute to his lifelong friend and collaborator Merle Haggard. Profoundly, it was one year to the day that his best friend and brother, Merle Haggard left this earth. This makes this epic tribute nothing short of beautiful yet painfully bittersweet.

Featuring Merle’s son, Ben Haggard, “He Won’t Ever Be Gone” exemplifies the love, friendship, and unbreakable bond of these two iconic musicians who are forever in our hearts. When it is hard to articulate feelings into words, leave it to Willie Nelson to flawlessly deliver so many feelings and emotions into a tenderly wrapped gift for the entire world to treasure, as he clearly shows in this video that Willie posted to his Facebook page.

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard’s friendship spanned over 50 years. Their music, grit, work ethic and family values tied these two legendary musicians in ways that bonded them as brothers, rather than just friends. Their friendship was simply a way of life. Their music and legacy reflect in their very essence, on stage and off, that spans an entire lifetime. That legacy now continues to live on in ways that can only be described as legendary. This stunning tribute is one for the history books.

Willie’s release “He Won’t Ever Be Gone” is where Willie tells the story of their friendship, love of music, and most humbly honors his lifelong best friend Merle Haggard and Merle’s musical legacy. What a rare opportunity to see an incredible musical hero honoring another in only a way that Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard could. Willie Nelson not only honors Merle Haggard, Nelson honors each of us. It is the highest privilege to be part of such a personal acknowledgment of such a  beautiful enduring friendship. Thanks to Willie Nelson and their eternal friendship, Merle’s memory, and tribute is forever in our hearts. As Willie said best, Merle Haggard “won’t ever be gone, his songs live on.”