Merle Haggard was a country music icon. In an era when the term is often used excessively and incorrectly, Merle embodied the term like few other entertainers. The entire music world lost a true legend when Merle died on April 6, 2016—his 79th birthday.
This week we’re celebrating the 50th anniversary of the release of Merle’s seventh studio album, Mama Tried, on Oct. 3, 1968.
The album’s title track reached the top of the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart, marking Merle’s fifth career No. 1 single at the time. He would go on to earn 38 No. 1 hits, placing him third all-time behind George Strait and Conway Twitty.
Of Merle’s 38 chart-toppers, “Mama Tried” was one of the most durable, spending four weeks atop the chart, which he also accomplished with “Okie From Muskogee” (1969) and “If We Make It Through December” (1973). In 2016, “Mama Tried” was added to the National Recording Registry in the Library of Congress.
Happy 50th, Mama Tried.
photo by Tammie Arroyo, AFF-USA.com