I’ve always said there are two types of people who wear sunglasses indoors: the blind and assholes. Well, I’ve finally been proven wrong and by none other than country music legend Merle Haggard.

Cowboy hat, sunglasses, and cloaked in black — almost Johnny Cash like — Merle Haggard took the stage at the PAC last night to resounding cheers. Haggard turned in a fairly short set that clocked in right at 60 minutes. His backing band, The Strangers, featured Haggard’s son, Ben, whom spent most of the evening impressing the crowd with his twangy lead guitar and Theresa, Merle’s wife, on backup vocals.

Haggard played every song you might expect to hear, including hits like “Mama Tried,” “Big City,” and the set closer, “Okie From Muskogee.” Between tunes Haggard, who was in great spirits, told stories and jokes. The audience remained mostly seated throughout the night, that is until the first notes of “I Think I’ll Just Stay Here And Drink” rang out. Haggard even whipped out his fiddle for one song, at times using the bow as if he were an orchestra conductor. One particular highlight came about halfway through the show in the form of a cover of Johnny Cash’s “Folsom Prison Blues.” Check out the full set list below.

And if you’re looking for new Haggard material, you’re in luck. Riding high on his recent performance at the Grammy Awards with Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, and Blake Shelton, an announcement came last week that he will soon be releasing an album with Kristofferson and Nelson.

Merle Haggard
N. Charleston Performing Arts Center

Big City
Twinkle, Twinkle Lucky Star
Silver Wings
If We Make It Through December
Are The Good Times Really Over
Back To Earth
Mama Tried
Train Of Life
Kickin’ Out The Footlights
30 Again
Folsom Prison Blues
I Think I’ll Just Stay Here And Drink
That’s The Way Love Goes
The Way I Am
Tonight The Bottle Let Me Down
Working In Tennessee
Take Me Back To Tulsa 
Okie From Muskogee

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