For the beginning part of the 1980s, Merle Haggard was a kind of slump when it comes to songwriting. However, two events helped break that block. One, a challenge that Leona Williams unconsciously gave during their marriage. Two, a rekindled friendship with Freddy Powers.
Merle Haggard and Freddy Powers
Merle Haggard and Freddy Powers have known each other from the start of the ‘60s. The Hag was playing as a guitarist for Wynn Stewart, while Powers was working as an opening act for a comedian named Spike Jones. Then, Haggard had his brake and became a recording artist and the two men lost contact with each other until the 80’
Willie Nelson was also a friend of Freddy Powers. One night, Powers stopped by Willie’s house for a visit and Merle Haggard happened to be there. The two friends visited about the old times they had in Las Vegas and they renewed their friendship. Thereafter, the two started to write songs frequently. “I Always Get Lucky With You” was their first composition together. However, the first Haggard-Powers single came in 1984 with “Let’s Chase Each Other Around The Room.”
“Let’s Chase Each Other Around The Room”
One day, Freddy Powers was working with Merle Haggard and; they on the bus from Canada going for the CMA show in Nashville. Powers’ girlfriend, Sherill Rogers who also sings with the band was also traveling with them. She said to Freddy:
“When we get to Nashville, I’m gonna chase you around the room.”
Everyone knows that Merle Haggard picks up ideas from little comments like that and writes about it. That’s what happened at that time. Merle and Freddy went to work on the tune and Sherill Rogers received one-third songwriting credit for her off-the-cuff-remark.
Then Merle Haggard inserted “Let’s Chase Each Other Around The Room” onto his album, “It’s All In The Game.” On September 22, 1984, the single and the Album both became No. 1.
Freddy Powers, merle haggard