George Jones, the country music legend whose graceful, evocative voice gave depth to some of the greatest songs in country music — including “She Thinks I Still Care,” “The Grand Tour” and “He Stopped Loving Her Today” — has died, according to his public relations firm.
Jones, 81, died Friday at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, the public relations firm said. He had been hospitalized since April 18 with fever and irregular blood pressure.
Jones’ career was marked by a tumultuous marriage to Tammy Wynette and bouts with alcoholism that led to occasional concert cancellations. (One of his nicknames was “No-Show Jones.”)
But there was no denying his talent. Waylon Jennings once wrote a song that said, “George might show up flyin’ high, if George shows up at all / But he may be, unconsciously, the greatest of them all.”
I sing from my heart, I love country music and I love the people that respond to it. You never see yourself as others do but I’ve always beeen proud to be part of country music and I hope that the format is proud of me.
Here’s a list of my favourite George Jones quotes. He’ll be missed.
Country fans need to support country music by buying albums and concert tickets for traditional artists or the music will just fade away. And that would be really sad.
I passed on “All My Exes Live in Texas,” which I really regret. I also passed on “Too Cold At Home,” “Oh, Lonesome Me” and “Life Turned Her That Way.” My excuse on those songs was because a jukebox was playing in the background and it distracted my attention. Truthfully, you end up passing on songs that do turn out to be hits but maybe they weren’t really right for you so you can’t second guess yourself. I’ve heard songs that are on several people’s albums at the same time and one person’s version might be a smash and the other person’s version is just so-so. You never know how it will turn out.
Maybe some folks are alcoholics and others are just voluntary drunks…. Maybe some have drinking problems, while others have problems enough to drink.
Once, when I had been drunk for several days, Shirley decided she would make it physically impossible for me to buy liquor. I lived about eight miles from Beaumont and the nearest liquor store. She knew I wouldn’t walk that far to get booze, so she hid the keys to every car we owned and left. But she forgot about the lawn mower. I can vaguely remember my anger at not being able to find keys to anything that moved and looking longingly out a window at a light that shone over our property. There, gleaming in the glow, was that ten-horsepower rotary engine under a seat. A key glistening in the ignition. I imagine the top speed for that old mower was five miles per hour. It might have taken an hour and a half or more for me to get to the liquor store, but get there I did.
Just because I ask a friend about her
Just because I spoke her name somewhere
Just because I rang her number by mistake today
She thinks I still care
Be real about what you do. Stay true to the voice inside you. Don’t let the “business” change what it is you love because the people, the fans, respond to what is heartfelt. They can always tell when a singer is faking it.
Me and the bottle have always been friends, we’ve had a few old nasty fights but the bottle would always win, so when I go to answer that final curtain call, I can hear these words being whispered by all… Ol’ George stopped drinking today.
I’ve had good luck, and bad luck
And no luck, it’s true
But I always get lucky with you
There are questions I’m still not wise enough to answer, just wise enough to no longer ask.