Never one to pass up a chance to remind people he’s no longer the redneck of “Okie from Muskogee,” Merle Haggard
these days peppers his concerts with references to smoking weed, jokes about wearing a bra and even occasional barbs about the mentality (or lack thereof) of the “all-American” towns he finds himself serenading. With his longtime associates the Strangers ably backing him up, his concerts are a journey through the history of country music itself, from the early hit “Mama Tried” to the 1970s barn-burner “Big City” to the tenderness of “If I Could Only Fly.” The Hag lives in quiet seclusion somewhere up near St. Helena, but when he’s on tour, glimmers of the hellraiser he once was still shine. See him on Saturday, June 12, at the Uptown Theatre. 1350 Third St., Napa. 8pm. $70–$85. 707.259.0123.