Merle Haggard On Love, Devotion and Sturgill Simpson

Wise Words from the Oft-Married Country Star

I was out in California recently, and picked up a copy of the swanky Malibu magazine. Not because I’m swanky like that, but because I saw Merle Haggard‘s name on the cover.

And while the one-page Q&A is good from start to finish, it’s the very last answer he gives that I kind of fell in love with.

The magazine asks Haggard — who has been married five times — how he defines love.

Merle Haggard

“A feeling of devotion,” Haggard says. “You know, love comes about in different ways over a person’s life and I’m not a kid anymore. I’m 78 years old. I felt love in many, many different ways. It depends on the moment, who you’re with and what you might expect.”

Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard Kevin Winter/WireImage

Elsewhere in the story, Haggard says that his favorite contemporary artist is country singer Sturgill Simpson.

“There’s a guy that’s stirring up some noise,” he says, “his name is Sturgill Simpson. He’s doing it with traditional country and he’s hotter than a pistol.”

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.