Grand Ole Opry Member Spotlight: George Jones
Often argued to be the greatest country music singer of all time, the Texas native George Jones still brings his legendary voice to regular appearances at the Grand Ole Opry. Known around the Opry as "The Possum," George's success in the country music world is difficult to rival. Career highlights include membership with the Opry, being inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, winning CMA awards too numerous to list, and being awarded the National Medal of Arts, the nation's highest honor for artistic excellence, in a ceremony at the White House.
Background and Early Career
- Raised by an alcoholic father and a very patient mother, George started his career as a child singing for tips on the street. After serving in Korea, he cut his first record in 1954. By 1955, George's songs were climbing the charts. He hit No. 1 in 1959 with his single "White Lightning."
- Though once known as No Show Jones due to him missing more than 50 concerts in 1976 because of his struggle with alcohol addiction, George has not had any incidences with his drinking since he was convicted of impaired driving in 1999. He continues to headline over 100 live dates a year.
Grand Ole Opry Induction
- Inducted January 4, 1969, George actually celebrated his 71rst birthday at the Opry.
George Jones at the Opry
- Want to know when you can see this legend at the Opry? He still makes regular appearances, so be sure to visit the VME Grand Ole Opry Blog for a schedule of upcoming performances.
Notable Hits You Might Hear at the Grand Ole Opry
- "The Grand Tour"
- "The Door"
- "Why, Baby, Why"
- "The Window Up Above"
- "She Thinks I Still Care"
- "The Race Is On"
- "Walk Through This World With Me."
- "White Lightening"
- "Whose Gonna Fill Their Shoes"
- "He Stopped Loving Her Today"
- "Tender Years"
- George Jones has had hit records in every decade of the second half of the 20th century. He is so revered that when the CMA Awards Show wouldn't't let him perform a complete version of his song "Choices," George declined to sing any of it, but Alan Jackson added a few lines of the song to his own performance that night.
- His recording of "He Stopped Loving Her Today" is one of the greatest country records of all time (some argue it to be the greatest ever). George Jones' status as a legend was solidified with the release of his biography that hit #6 on the New York Times Bestseller List in 1996. The question is, "Whose Gonna Fill [His] Shoes?"
- See the complete list of current Grand Ole Opry members!