Merle Haggard has released numerous hits over the years, but one of his most famous songs is “The Fightin’ Side of Me.” Released in December 1969, the song quickly climbed to number one on the country chart, making it one of the biggest hits of Haggard’s career.
“The Fightin’ Side of Me” was also the title track of Merle’s album. The album was a commercial success, reaching number one on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart. The title track was written in response to the anti-war and civil rights protests of the late 1960s. The song’s lyrics expressed Haggard’s belief that while people have the right to protest, they should also be respectful of the country and its traditions.
The song’s opening line set the tone for the rest of the song:
“I hear people talkin’ bad about the way we have to live here in this country, harpin’ on the wars we fight and gripin’ ’bout the way things oughta be,”
Haggard’s lyrics were direct and unapologetic, with lines such as
“If you don’t love it, leave it / Let this song I’m singin’ be a warnin’.”
The song was a rallying cry for those who believed in traditional American values and the importance of patriotism.
“The Fightin’ Side of Me” resonated with listeners across the country, and its impact was felt for years to come. The song became one of Haggard’s signature hits, and he continued to perform it throughout his career. Its message of pride in one’s country and respect for its traditions is still relevant today, and it remains a beloved anthem of the country music genre.
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