Inspired by Johnny Cash's performance at San Quentin, and determined after being placed in solitary confinement at that same institution, Merle Haggard began his country music career employing a powerfully simple style with populist lyrics that has resonated with a mass audience ever since. "Learning to Live with Myself" is an intimate portrait of the taciturn and genuine artist. Featuring friends, family, and colleagues who take us through his life and career, it is intercut with a recent performance following a cancer operation. Also joining the fray and offering words of tribute include Kris Kristofferson, Keith Richards, John Fogerty, and Robert Duvall. Haggard's music has a poetic simplicity and a sincere sense of egalitarian Americanism that seems to be lacking in today's popular culture. Watching Merle in this documentary, you get a sense of an artist veritably concerned with his craft, and not caught up with the glitz and flash which has polluted much of modern music.