Its sad to see the old country music icons go, and many will miss the legendary George Jones who passed away just yesterday. Known as The Possum, he occupied a place in the ears and hearts of fans young and old since the 50's. A regular on the Hee Haw show in the late 1960s, George filled many a living room with his music along with his wife at the time, Tammy Wynette and peers like Merle Haggard and Faron Young. No stranger to the stage of the Grand Ole Oprey or those in Branson over his long career, he will be sorely missed by many old school country fans.
The hard partying country star finally found the love of his life, though married 4 times, his current wife Nancy has been with him for 30 years. George ranked number 275 of Rolling Stones' greatest singers of all time list. He was featured in Playboy Magazine in April 2011, who dubbed him an outlaw from the thickets of East Texas who changed the face of American music. With rockabilly tunes like White Lightening in 1959, George did play a big part in shifting the country genre toward what it has grown into today - though 'rockabilly' then and now are worlds apart in sound. A playboy in his time, its a fitting appearance for the handsome devil who could croon about a heartbreak like no one else.
I found this image this morning and must say Jones had great taste in boots, but the mint julep green color to match his suit has to go. Red would have been better George! Stage clothes by Nudie the Rodeo Tailor were sure something back then, though this suit he put on George lacks all the sequins that were so popular in those days. Some of the jackets Nudie whipped up made the most decorated cowboy boot pale in comparison. Don't glitter boys, just strum.
At 81, George Jones was still entertaining his fans, but he had plans of retiring. His final concert was planned for this coming November with a lineup of country music stars a mile long. He called it the No Show Jones, which was a nickname he picked up years ago. While he had many a hit over the years, the biggest and most played of all of them has got to be, He Stopped Loving Her Today - and here he is performing it on the Grand Ole Oprey just three years ago. His voice may have aged, but he still has what it takes.
Rest in peace, Possum. You'll always be remembered as the greatest heartache balladeer, ranking with the likes of Hank and Johnny as one of the greatest country music artists that ever lived.