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Merle Haggard Responds After Bob Dylan Calls Out Country Legends

Merle Haggard Bob Dylan
Ethan Miller / Kevin Winter, Getty Images

Bob Dylan has never been afraid to say and do things that get people talking. The legendary singer-songwriter was honored Friday night (Feb. 6) as the 2015 MusiCares Person of the Year, in a ceremony that featured a star-studded lineup of performers, as well as an acceptance speech from Dylan himself, during which he called out some of country music’s own legends.

Merle Haggard didn’t even think much of my songs. I know he didn’t. He didn’t say that to me, but I know way back when, he didn’t,” Dylan said (quote via Saving Country Music). “Buck Owens did, and he recorded some of my early songs … And that trumps anything else out of Bakersfield. Buck Owens or Merle Haggard? If you had to have somebody’s blessing, you can figure it out.”

Later in his speech, Dylan had some choice words for Tom T. Hall, saying that his song ‘I Love’ “might be a little over-cooked.”

Dylan and Haggard toured together in 2005, on the Never Ending Tour (which also saw Dylan pairing up with Willie Nelson), and Dylan’s former road partner took to Twitter on Saturday afternoon to set the record straight.

Haggard and Hall weren’t the only two lampooned by Dylan during his MusiCares speech. R&B singer Marcia Ambrosius was also the subject of some less-than-complimentary remarks.

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