Music

Hear One of Merle Haggard's Final Collaborations With Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson

Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP

For the Aug. 2018 release King of the Road: A Tribute to Roger Miller, three of country music's most iconic artists teamed up for a previously unreleased cover of a Miller classic and the result was something truly special.

"Old Friends" is one of the last recordings from Merle Haggard before his death on April 3, 2016. Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson trade off vocals with the Hag on this new version of the haunting track which takes on new meaning. Miller appeared on the country charts for the final time with his 1982 version of "Old Friends" that featured Nelson and Ray Price.

Miller's known for his sillier songs ("Dang Me"), but the project shines light on his more serious material as a songwriter, including "When Two Worlds Collide" and "Husbands and Wives."

Although Miller passed away in 1992, his music has gone on to influence an entire new crop of country artists. Still, there is something magical about hearing three fellow country legends honor their late friend in the best way they know how - through song.

READ MORE: Waylon Jennings Introduces Future R&B Hit 'The Chokin' Kind'

Other artists who contributed to the Miller tribute album include Loretta LynnDolly PartonEric ChurchKacey MusgravesShooter JenningsJessi Colter and Jamey Johnson.

"Old Friends" Lyrics

Old friends, pitching pennies in the park
Playing croquet 'till it's dark, old friends
Old friends, swapping lies of lives and loves
Pitching popcorn to the doves, old friends

Old friends, looking up to watch a bird
Holding arms to climb a curb, old friends, old friends
Old friends, Lord when all my work is done
Bless my life and grant me one, old friend
At least one, old friend

Old friends, looking up to watch a bird
Holding arms to climb a curb, old friends
Old friends, Lord when all my work is done
Bless my life and grant me one, old friend
At least one, old friend

This article originally ran on Aug 24, 2018.

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Hear One of Merle Haggard's Final Collaborations With Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson