Saturday is Merle Haggard's 76th birthday. Ronnie Dunn is one of Merle's biggest fans. Ronnie's wife once bought him a signed Haggard guitar for his birthday and the President of Ronnie's publishing company once hired Merle to play for Ronnie's birthday. Tomorrow, Ronnie returns the favor by releasing a new song called "Hey Haggard." Ronnie says he has been working on the song for two years, ever since Merle agreed to play the final four shows on the final Brooks & Dunn tour.
SIDE NOTE: I was actually at the next to last show on that tour. I saw Merle Haggard walk past the room I was in back stage and I stepped out to get his attention. I said, "Mr. Haggard, that was a great show." As he turned around, I reached out to shake his hand and introduced myself. He shook my hand and said, "Thank you, son. You can call me Merle." It's one of those little moments I will never forget!
Happy Birthday, Merle!