Nine gigs scrapped due to respiratory problems.

Country legend Merle Haggard, 68, has cancelled his dates for the remainder of the year due to respiratory problems. A brief tour was to begin Oct. 1 in San Antonio.

A total of nine dates in Texas, Arkansas and New Mexico have been scrapped, as has been a potential run in November, according to Bobby Roberts, president of the Bobby Roberts Co., Haggard's agency.

"He's just not feeling well and I think he needs to take some time off," Roberts tells Billboard.biz. "In the first seven months of the year, Merle played about 80 dates, and he's been at the top of his game."

In addition to Haggard's extensive touring schedule, the artist is also in the process of recording a new record for Capitol. The set will be produced by Jimmy Bowen, who came out of retirement to record the veteran artist.

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