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On This Date: Merle Haggard’s “Workin’ Man Blues” Was At The Top Of The Country Charts In 1969


Merle Haggard’s connection to the struggles of the working man were a throughline in so many of his songs, but ‘Workin’ Man Blues' might be the most on the nose when you boil his songs down to the title. The song was the second single on his album, A Portrait of Merle Haggard, and became the top country singles song on the charts in August of 1969. His lyrics that touch on keeping “my nose to the grindstone” and getting “a little tired on the weekend” to drinking “a little beer that evening” continue to resonate with fans today. A favorite live performance of the song was recorded in Austin, Texas in 1978 and keeps the flavor of the blue-collar tune alive and well. (Whiskey Riff)