On April 26, 2013, we lost the Possum, George Jones, whose seamless iconic voice sang heartbreak so intense that he inspired a generation of country singers and songwriters.
It only made sense that the 2013 Country Music Association Awards paid tribute to the legend, with country superstars Alan Jackson and George Strait coming together for a performance of Jones’ most recognizable and cherished hit, “He Stopped Loving Her Today.”
Host Brad Paisley introduced Jackson and Strait, who were both donning cowboy hats. He described Jones as the “greatest country singer of all time,” adding that he was proud to have called the legend his friend.
The King of Country then started strumming his guitar with Jackson on his side and later, the two traded lines and harmonized their extremely powerful voices beautifully. Images of Jones all through his illustrious life were shown on the screen behind the singers.
Jackson and Strait’s performance earned some of the biggest cheers during the night of glitzy performances. It was truly a delightful homage to a man that all country fans adored and respected.
The Wistful Track That Tugged The Hearts Of Millions
Released in 1980 as the lead single off George Jones’ album I Am What I Am, “He Stopped Loving Her Today” has been lauded as one of the genre’s greatest songs. It ranked No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart and helped Jones score different awards – including a Grammy for Best Male Vocal Country Performance.
A week after Jones’ death, the song re-entered Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart – peaking at No. 21.
And there were no better choices than Alan Jackson and George Strait to sing such an iconic ballad and honor Jones’ life and musical contribution. You can watch their performance of “He Stopped Loving Her Today” in the video below.
Alan Jackson, George Jones, George Strait