April 2

Listen to Merle Haggard’s “I Take a Lot of Pride of What I Am”

On this day and age, people are having issues with themselves. We mostly see this among teens battling with raging hormones and probably, peer pressure. With music being one of the most influential things in one’s life, it is good to hear these uplifting songs on the radio.

Merle Haggard released the song under his album “Pride in What I Am” back in 1968. An appropriate title for the message of the album.

merle haggard
Screen grab from Youtube in one of Merle Haggard’s performance

Haggard’s Early Struggles

Merle was born during The Great Depression era in America. So, his family decided to move to Bakersfield, California. Growing up, he also had a few problems with the law. This probably made him gravitate towards the sub-genre of country outlaw.

His struggle with the law continued as he spent prison time in San Quentin for three years. He was pardoned by California’s Governor back then, Ronald Reagan in 1972. Although he was in prison, his passion for singing was still there as he joined the prison band performing for his co-inmates.

But this did not hinder Haggard’s career. He used this as his inspiration and so, he became one of the country legends that we all look up to.

Lyrics Breakdown

“I never travel in a hurry

Because I got nobody waitin’ for me anywhere

Home is anywhere I’m livin’

If it’s sleepin’ on some vacant bench in City Square”

In line with this, the struggles that were mentioned were quite obvious. When nobody is really there for you, or when you don’t have a place to go home to, you can only depend on yourself.

This is what the song wants to imply. Merle wants his listener to embrace their struggles. Because with these struggles that you are facing, you will learn more. You will learn the art of adjustment and maybe change the outcome of your action to your benefit.

Everyone can do that. As long as you believe in yourself, everything else will follow and you can do greater things. And you can finally say to yourself, “I take a lot of pride of what I have become.”

To be inspired, you can listen to the amazing song here:


merle haggard

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