Suzy Bogguss honors Merle Haggard
Since releasing the album “Lucky” a few years back, selections from her compilation of Merle Haggard hits have been a staple of Suzy Bogguss concerts. Tonight was no exception.
The award-winning Nashville singer/composer/musician included several Haggard classics in her two-hour performance at the historic Woodward Opera House, the centerpiece of Mount Vernon, Ohio’s vibrant music scene.
Bogguss noted that Haggard was born on April 6, and that he would have turned 82 today. Sadly, Haggard’s 2016 death from complications of pneumonia also came on his birthday. The country legend has been gone three years, but his music will endure in the hearts and voices of pros like Bogguss.
Two guitars and a stand-up base were more than enough backing for her pure voice, which is as strong as the day in 1981 when her first album dropped.
This is the point where a music critic would salute the timber of her voice, the effortless shifts of vocal gears, and her lovely vibrato. I don’t know vibrato from viola, but this I can tell you: The lady can flat out sing.
Ms. Bogguss’ encore came not from her catalog, or from Haggard’s, but was a classic Crosby, Stills and Nash ditty composed by Graham Nash: “Teach Your Children.”
I implore you to do just that. Teach Your Children about legends like Haggard and icons like Suzy Bogguss. You don’t have to be a critic or Music Appreciation prof. You don’t have to know why one song has legs and another drops quickly off the Top 600 into obscurity. Just trust your ears and your heart. They know.
Happy birthday, Merle.
And good night Mount Vernon, Nashville, and all points south.