Workin Man Blues Live
Hag's first live record of the 1990s finds him, at age 62, in strong form as he skims the cream from his own remarkable songbook. His voice may not have the sheer force of his younger years, but his singing is full of attractive nuances and passionate depth. His finely tuned band is another asset here, most notably Telecaster magician Redd Volkaert, who has digested all of Roy Nichols's classic licks and has incorporated them into his own risk-taking style. Longtime Stranger steel player Norm Hamlet, fiddle legend Johnny Gimble, and Hag's "best boy," ex-wife, and harmony singer Bonnie Owens all make vital contributions. Haggard also pays homage to his three main idols with covers of Bob Wills's "Ida Red" and Lefty Frizzell's "That's the Way Love Goes" plus his own brand-new addition to Jimmie Rodgers's "Blue Yodel" series called "Motorcycle Cowboy/Blue Yodel #13." Acrobat. 2005.