George Jones was one of country music’s greatest enduring legends by far. He was an active performer, singer and songwriter since 1954, starting with the small record label Starday, and later signing record deals with other labels such as Mercury, United Artists, Musicor, Epic, MCA Nashville, Asylum and Bandit Records labels.
Although George Jones was often associated with alcohol abuse, and the 1970’s were a bad decade for the performer who missed so many concerts that many fans used to call him “No Show Jones”. He was often broke during the 70’s as well, but some of his friends in the country music business would help him out financially, including Waylon Jennings and Johnny Cash. Ironically, Jones outlived both performers by a fair number of years despite his self-destructive cycle of alcohol abuse issues. Despite, all of his problems, the singer was married four times, including to fellow country star, Tammy Wynette between 1969 to 1975. In 1983, he married for the fourth time to Nancy Supulvado, who remained his current wife until his death.
Long considered to an admirer of his idol, Hank Williams, George Jones was considered to be one of the old guard performers of country music. Although his last studio album was released in 2008, George Jones had several greatest hits collections released up until only recently. But, his albums spanned the decades from 1957 until the present. “Why Baby Why” was his first single, released in 1955 peaking at #4 on the country charts, a big achievement for a new artist. A huge string of hit singles followed that first top ten chart hit. In the 1950’s two of his flip sides also became hits after DJs gave the songs airplay, but it was in 1959 that George Jones had his first #1 hit with “White Lightning”.
During the 1960’s, George Jones had as many hit singles on the country charts as The Beatles seemed to have on the pop charts. He was a huge name in country music. Jones kept his long train of singles through the 70’s, but he started off 1980 with one of his biggest and best singles ever, “He Stopped Loving Her Today”, which was an excellent song, and easily one of the very best of his entire career. The song seemed like an instant classic. His last single released in 2008, “You And Me And Time” a duet with Georgette Jones, failed to chart, but that hardly diminished from what was one of the greatest careers ever for any country music legend.
George Jones was a giant in the country music. Today, his classic song, “He Stopped Loving Her Today”, seems much sadder than usual. He’ll be deeply missed as one of the very best country performers of all time.