Mere days before his 84th birthday, the Oak Ridge Boys’ mainstay William Lee Golden found himself marveling at the swiftness of time.

“The years have been slipping by me pretty fast lately,” Golden says with a laugh during a recent interview with Taste of Country. “But you know what? I'll take all of them that I can get. I’m happy to have another birthday.”

Golden draws in a deep breath, as the man who turned 84 years old on Jan. 12 can’t deny that with every year comes a certain amount of sadness.

“There's good and bad about being old, I guess,” the Alabama native says quietly. “We get to celebrate another year. But there is the sadness of losing friends along the way that sometimes is the downside of being old. But you know what? Those are treasured friends and treasured memories always. We stand on a lot of their shoulders.”

And stand tall Golden does, as he continues his work not only as the treasured baritone of one of country music’s most legendary groups, but also as a music maker alongside his family as a part of his own band, William Lee Golden and the Goldens. But to keep such a packed schedule, Golden admits he must put in some major effort.

“I feel like that I have to activate myself every single day,” says Golden, who recorded his three-album set Golden Classics during the doldrums of the pandemic. “If you don’t, you sit down for a little while and the next thing you know, you get up and you got to get your balance if you're not careful. I try to stay active, though. Yesterday, I did 200 sit ups.”

It’s a daily ritual that Golden says "pumps him up," along with a walking regimen that he started a few years back.

“I walk anywhere from three to seven miles a day,” he says. “I have walked 12 miles in a day several times. There is a six-mile path that I have that I try to walk every day. It always makes my day.”

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