Remembering Merle Haggard Two Years After His Death

Today, we remember Merle Haggard: today marks two year since he died on his 79th birthday at his home in California due to complications from pneumonia.

His fantastic discography, spanning over six decades, includes many of country music’s greatest hits. Writing many from the perspective of the working class people, Haggard’s music resonated so easily with those going through tough times.

With 38 #1 country hits under his belt, Haggard started playing guitar at age 11, two years after the death of his father. Turning to music to escape his school and criminal troubles, it was a run-in with country star Lefty Frizzell that really catapulted his love for performing. Haggard snuck his way backstage and sang one of Frizzell’s song to him. Lefty insisted Merle hit the stage before him, and Haggard fell in love with being in front of a crowd.

It wasn’t smooth sailing–Haggard was sentenced to five years in prison after attempting to rob a cafe with a friend. Johnny Cash visited the prison to perform, and that pushed Haggard to pursue music full-time when he was released early in 1960.

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Telephone

The Top 20 Telephone Anthems

The telephone was patented this week in 1876 by none other than Canadian innovator Alexander Graham Bell.

Thanks to this nifty little invention, music fans have been able to do so much more. Things like calling our loved ones about new records being released, order concert tickets remotely, and even take our music on-the-go with us… it’s been an incredible 141 years since!

Bell’s contribution to society has also affected the way musicians write songs: once distant lovers can now be reached on a whim (or they can ignore voicemails much easier…)

Even as phones have become smaller, more portable, and closer to our hip than ever, it still continues to be a focal point in many lyrics.

Phones have inspired many countless hits, and we’re counting down our Top 20 landline anthems!

Blondie – Call Me

Todd Rundgren – Hello It’s Me

The Beatles – Hello, Goodbye

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Moody Blues

The Moody Blues Embark On Fan Cruise

After discovering that they are to be inducted into the 2018 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, The Moody Blues kick the New Year off in exciting fashion, by embarking on the latest instalment of their fan cruise. The fourth Moody Blues Cruise sets sail today, 2 January, from Miami and will stop at Grand Cayman Island and Cozumel, Mexico, before returning to port on Sunday, 7 January.

Among the artists joining The Moody Blues on the seafaring festival are The Zombies, who also were nominated for Rock Hall induction this year, but weren’t chosen. Other acts performing on the cruise include Dave Mason, Jefferson Starship, Richie Furay, Al Stewart, the Alan Parsons Live Project, Little River Band, Ambrosia and The Ides of March.

The Moody Blues’ singer/guitarist Justin Hayward told ABC Radio that he’s really looking forward to the cruise. “It’s always a great thing,” he said, “where people get together and enjoy the music and celebrate the music.”

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Seal Frank Sinatra

Seal Joins Frank Sinatra On “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town” Duet

We’d never thought we’d hear Seal and Frank Sinatra on the same track… until today.

The two vocal legends appear on the Christmas song, “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town.”

Permission was granted by Frank Sinatra Enterprises as the star passed away in May 1998. The single comes a few days before what would’ve been 102nd birthday.

The dream collaboration, granted by Frank Sinatra Enterprises, will be released ahead of Frank Sinatra’s birthday on 12th December. It will be accompanied by an exclusively commissioned video, showcasing both artists at their very best.

Listen below:

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