Back When Merle Haggard Surprised Everyone At The Grand Ole Opry

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Just when everyone thought Merle Haggard was slowing down, he proved them all wrong.

At the age of 78, the iconic Merle Haggard showed no indications of retiring. He was touring the United States with a few special attendees, such as Kris Kristofferson, and just ended his Django and Jimmie Tour with Willie Nelson.

Haggard celebrated the Grand Ole Opry’s 90th Anniversary in October 2015 with a surprise appearance.

Based on the Opry website, he performed “some of his most-loved hits including ‘Big City’, ‘Silver Wings’, ‘I Think I’ll Just Stay Here And Drink,’ and ‘The Fightin’ Side Of Me.’”

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“I Think I’ll Just Stay Here And Drink” was composed by The Hag himself, and was listed on his 1980 album Back to the Barrooms. It was his 26th #1 country hit.

The hit track boasts a jam session between the verses, which highlights Haggard’s talent with the electric guitar. He added the instrumental break on his October performance at the Opry and we can’t say for sure which is better: seeing Haggard nail his guitar solo, or paying attention to his amazing stories.

Haggard is recognized for making his shows a family occasion. His wife, Theresa, and son, Noel, sing backup for him, and his youngest son, Ben, plays lead guitar in his band.

Let us remember this surprise performance of “I Think I’ll Just Stay Here And Drink”


Could be holding you tonight
Could quit doing wrong, start doin’ right
You don’t care about what I think
I think I’ll just stay here and drink

Hey, puttin’ you down, don’t square no deal
Least you know the way I feel
Take all the money in the bank
I think I’ll just stay here and drink

Listen close and you can hear
That loud jukebox playin’ in my ear
Ain’t no woman gonna change the way I think
I think I’ll just stay here and drink

Hurtin’ me now, don’t mean a thing
Since lovin’ you, don’t feel no pain
My mind ain’t nothin’ but a total blank
I think I’ll just stay here and drink, yeah

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