Kacey Musgraves Joins G Fest
As previously announced, G Fest organizers are continuing plans for the inaugural event in honor of the late Okie from Muskogee, Merle Haggard. The festival, which features some of the biggest names in Country, Rock and Americana, along with the best up-and-coming and local talent, will take place as scheduled June 16-18 in Muskogee. Additionally, GRAMMY-award winning singer/songwriter Kacey Musgraves will perform at the festival to celebrate one of her heroes.
“Artists like Merle Haggard are important because they became legends and set trends not by worrying about money and fame but just by being themselves. So it just inspires me even more to uphold what’s important to me as a person and songwriter first and not worry about the rest,” said Musgraves.
The Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame has been given the green light to place a Merle Haggard monument on the north lawn of the Muskogee Civic Center, a step forward for a project about five years in the making. The memorial, as originally envisioned, would include a bronze sculpture of Haggard sitting on a bench with a guitar case and hat. It would be placed where visitors can take photos of “Old Glory down at the courthouse” and the Civic Center, where Haggard recorded the album Okie from Muskogee. OMHOF Executive Director Jim Blair believes an opportunity exists that would expand the scope of the memorial and add a monument Haggard designed and asked a Ponca City artist, Dan Jones, artist to create. Haggard planned to have the piece placed at his ranch near Bakersfield, Calif.
“They want to see that placed in Muskogee,” Blair said about those who are part of Haggard’s organization. “The bench will be great, but what a story to tell — to have a memorial standing next to it that was designed by Merle himself.”
In addition to the monument, organizers plan on revealing the “Merle Haggard Avenue” street sign in the coming months.
G Fest is funded through a joint effort by The Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame, The City of Muskogee, City of Muskogee Foundation and Muskogee Tourism. Net proceeds of the event will be used to further the mission of the OMHOF and further develop the infrastructure of the Hatbox complex for future festivals.