Thursday, February 04, 2016

Merle Haggard Cancels All February Shows to Fight Double Pneumonia

Merle Haggard has been forced to cancel all of his February dates as he fights a case of double pneumonia.

While such a diagnosis could be alarming in someone who is 78, the fact is that Haggard has fought and beat pneumonia and other lung ailments numerous times in the last few years. In 2008, he had part of one lung removed due to non-small-cell lung cancer.

According to Haggard's publicist, Merle was still feeling weak after battling the illness and has decided to seek further treatment. They expect him to be back on the road in the spring.

Haggard had shows scheduled in New Mexico two weeks ago but they were cancelled when it was felt that the altitude would be too much for him.

Among the cancelled February shows are appearances in Palm Desert, Santa Rosa, Lemoore and Oakland, CA along with a private appearance in Las Vegas; however, taking into account the publicist comment about him returning to the stage "later in the spring", it would seem that nine March dates and, possibly, seven April dates are also in jeopardy.

Haggard is coming off the highest charting album of his career on the Billboard 200, Django and Jimmie with Willie Nelson. It debuted at number 7 last June eclipsing his previous high of number 37 for the 1983 album Pancho and Lefty, also with Nelson.