If you’re a newbie fan in the country music scene, you might have been surprised how the best George Jones songs look like a list of the greatest songs in the industry. The superstar belongs to the Country Music Hall of Fame since 1992 and for fantastic reasons. His career was so legendary that during the induction, Reba McEntire aptly introduced him by just saying: “George Jones.”
While this well-known country music icon may have left the Earth for good in 2013, his contribution to the entire music industry lives on. Reminisce on the best of his hit by checking out the songs listed below:
10. “I Don’t Need Your Rockin’ Chair”
From ‘Walls Can Fall’ (1992)
Among all of George Jone‘s hits, many of his fans may think that “I Don’t Need Your Rockin’ Chair” will fit as a hit anthem. It was released in 1992 and it was when the young country movement was peaking.
This song found its way to a few radio stations, but it was best acknowledged at the CMA. It’s been a smash hit and it’s a reminder of how this singer has been influencing many artists in the same genre. The song featured appearances by Vince Gill, Garth Brooks, Travis Tritt, and Mark Chesnutt.
Joe Diffie, Pam Tillis, Alan Jackson, and T. Graham Brown also made appearances among many other artists. It goes to show that Jones was so loved and is still revered.
9. “Bartender’s Blues”
From ‘Bartender’s Blues’ (1978)
As George Jones battled with alcohol during his early years in the industry, people might have thought that he wrote this single.
The song is basked with whiskey but the singer didn’t pen this. James Taylor wrote it and he also made an appearance on the record. With two renowned singers working on the song, it’s no surprise how it peaked at No.3.
Every bar in America has this in their jukebox, proving that Jones and his ability to release a country waltz classic are worth celebrating.
8. “I Always Get Lucky With You”
From ‘Shine On’ (1983)
In 1982, George Jones smashed the country charts with “C.C Waterback” and “Yesterday’s Wine.” He did so with Merle Haggard. After the two legends’ success, Billy Sherrill found a single that Haggard co-wrote and recorded. He thought that it would fit Jones too.
A few unverified sources say that the producer didn’t tell Jones that Haggard wrote the song “I Always Get Lucky With You.” At that time, the two singers weren’t on speaking terms. However, they made up and Jones bagged the No.1.
They further proved that they’re best at working together again when they paired for the album Kickin’ Out the Footlight in 2006.
7. “The Grand Tour”
From ‘The Grand Tour’ (1974)
George Jones released “The Grand Tour” in 1974, a song that seems to tell his story at that point in his life. It sings about touring and a blissful family life that’s been devastated by divorce. During the release of this single, Jones and his wife, Tammy Wynette was going through a rough patch.
What makes this song even more ironic is that it’s written by George Richey, Jone’s ex-wife’s future husband.
Beyond all this irony is how this song receives wild applause when he performs it live. Without a doubt, this song is witness to how George Jones is a star in country music.
6. “The Race Is On”
From ‘The Race Is On’ (1964)
Almost a decade after this hit maker stepped into the country limelight, “The Race is On” came out. During this year, he was already gaining an extensive catalog of hits such as “Tender Years,” “White Lightning,” and “Why Baby Why.”
“The Race is On” and the preceding hits before its release was just a prelude to an even more extensive chart-topping discography. 165 of hits records would then dominate the Billboard Country singles chart for many years.
In 1989, Sawyer Brown revived the single and it landed on the Top 5.
5. “Who’s Gonna Fill Their Shoes”
From ‘Who’s Gonna Fill Their Shoes’ (1985)
Talk about the country industry’s strongest links to the past and you’ve got George Jones and his hits. He proves so with his songs such as “Who’s Gonna Fill Their Shoes.”
In this single, he highlighted how he’s a fan of the genre he belongs to. He also paid tribute to country heroes like Lefty Frizzell and Hank Williams. The singer also paid homage to his friends like Conway Twitty and Johnny Cash.
If you’re one of the many passionate country music buffs, you’d comprehend why “Who’s Gonna Fill Their Shoes” is on this list.
4. “The One I Loved Back Then (The Corvette Song)”
From ‘Who’s Gonna Fill Their Shoes’ (1985)
Many people might mistake this song’s title as “Hotter Than a Two Dollar Pistol.” It might be fit as the actual title since the song sings about a man’s thirst for a car.
With Jone’s fascinating low notes and notable foot-stomping fiddles, this song was No.3. It stayed up there for two weeks, making it one of the best George Jones records.
3. “Golden Ring”
From ‘Golden Ring’ (1976)
One year after George Jones had a divorce with Tammy Wynette, they slashed a hit. Their breakup was the most ironic aspect of this release and the fans were there for it. It was an addition to their list of hits during their short-lived six-year marriage.
The series of their hits included “Take Me” and “We’re Gonna Hold On.” These songs reflected their lives. More songs after their divorce rode the airwaves such as “Near You” and “Two Story House.”
In 1995, they recorded and toured for the last try before Wynette passed away. “Golden” was one of their songs that aptly captured a prominent history in country music made by this Hall of Fame duo.
From ‘Cold Hard Truth’ (1999)
George Jones seemed to humbly reconcile with his mistakes as he sang “Choices.” It’s a song that offers many words of wisdom and relatable messages, depending on which stage the listener is in life. While it’s not a radio favorite, it received a Grammy.
1. “He Stopped Loving Her Today”
From ‘I Am What I Am’ (1980)
Countless artists across the music genre site “He Stopped Loving Her Today” as the best country song ever. It also rings true with the many polls conducted over the past decades.
It’s a well-received song that tells a morbid story of a man how a man has to pass away so he can stop loving his ex. Stories circulated that the singer told his producer that he thinks no one would patronize a song that tells that sad story. However, his view was reversed when the song became No.1, earned a CMA, ACM, and a Grammy Award.
Were you prepared for the stories behind the icon’s hit singles? If you say no, we’re not going to judge you.
The best George Jones songs are country staples and if you give his songs a listen, you’d understand why. Stream his classic hits now and catch up on the legend that once was.
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