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Merle Haggard

The Life and Times of a Badass Legend From holding his first guitar to "cheap thrills and bad decisions," see the legend through the years
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Merle Haggard
Photographs courtesy of Merle Haggard

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Merle photographed in 1944 with his father and his dog, Jack

Haggard's early songs narrate the difficult circumstances of his own life: The son of Dust Bowl migrants who fled from Oklahoma to California's San Joaquin Valley, Haggard lost his father at age nine, hopped his first train a year later, and spent his teenage years in and out of juvenile institutions, military schools and, eventually, San Quentin.
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