Merle Haggard will be the focus of a new tribute concert set for April 6th in Nashville. "Sing Me Back Home: The Music of Merle Haggard" marks what would have been the influential singer-songwriter's 80th birthday as well as the first anniversary of his death: Haggard died on April 6th, 2016.
Willie Nelson, Kenny Chesney and Miranda Lambert anchor the wildly diverse lineup: Dierks Bentley, Hank Williams Jr., Loretta Lynn and John Mellencamp are all on the bill, along with Kacey Musgraves, the Avett Brothers, Alison Krauss, John Anderson, Connie Smith, Bobby Bare, Ronnie Dunn and Jamey Johnson.
Southern-rock road warriors Lynyrd Skynyrd, Americana pioneer Lucinda Williams and Allman Brothers guitarist Warren Haynes are also set to perform. Haggard's guitarist son Ben Haggard, Don Was and Buddy Cannon are the concert's music directors.
Held at the Bridgestone Arena, the show is a production of Blackbird Presents, who staged a similar all-star tribute to Kris Kristofferson last March.
Haggard, one the architects of the Bakersfield Sound and an inductee into the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in 1994, was revered for his way with a lyric. He wrote and recorded such country classics as 1966's "The Bottle Let Me Down," 1968's "Mama Tried" and 1969's "Okie From Muskogee."
Tickets for "Sing Me Back Home: The Music of Merle Haggard" go on sale Friday, March 3rd.