Country legend Merle Haggard never slowed down, touring well into his seventies—and apparently, he’s not letting a little thing like death stop him from making waves now.
According to Rolling Stone, recreational strains of marijuana developed by the late musician are set to enter the Colorado market in the coming months. Merle’s Girls—named after a California-based soccer team sponsored by Haggard and co-developed by Colorado Weed Co.—will initially launch with a sativa strain, although the company plans to expand its product line in the coming years.
“The sativas kept him going, kept him creative, kept him getting out there and being able to play,” Michael Smith, Haggard’s business partner at Colorado Weed Co., told the Denver-based newspaper Westword. “We’re starting out with what Merle liked to smoke.”
Haggard, who released a pot-friendly duet with fellow ganjapreneur Willie Nelson in 2015, wasn’t always a marijuana advocate. In 1969, he became well-known for the anti-hippie anthem “Okie from Muskogee,” but according to his daughter Jenessa Haggard-Bennett, he warmed up to cannabis in his later years after a doctor recommended medical marijuana to help him relax.
In a 2005, Haggard told Men’s Journal, “At the time I wrote ‘Okie From Muskogee,’ I didn’t smoke. I had been brainwashed like most of America about what marijuana would and wouldn’t do. But if a guy doesn’t learn anything in 50 years, there’s something wrong with him. I’ve learned a lot about it, and America has, too.”
According to Colorado Weed Co., Merle’s Girls hopes to eventually expand into Oregon and Washington, as well as move into the medicinal market.