“The performer who began his career imitating his idols has now become the most imitated singer; one who sets standards for others.”
(Loretta Lynn to George Jones)

Thanks to the wonders of technology, we get to share the joy in one of George Jones’ momentous life event. Back in 1987, he was honored with his “Living Legend” award. A tribute video was prepared prior to him receiving the award. In it, he was highly praised by fellow country musicians and producers. Among others were Randy Travis, Roy Acuff, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, and Waylon Jennings with wife Jessi Colter. Besides thanking his fans and the people behind his new title, he also made a special mention of his wife, Nancy Jones.

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“George has become a legend because of his talents, and because his fellow artists are his biggest fans.”
(Loretta Lynn)

On that note, let us include to the tribute speeches, one of his biggest admirers who had followed in his footstep, it is none other than Alan Jackson who today is a legend himself. The following statement may not be in reference to Jones’ award, but it has the same thought on the greatness of The Possum. He said,

“While George was known for his wild and crazy days, I’ve known him for 25 years as a friend. He had grown into a real good man. Of course, he will always be the greatest singer and interpreter of real country music. There’ll never be another. Like the song says, ‘You know this old world is full of singers, but just a few are chosen to tear your heart out when they sing. Imagine life without them. …Who’s gonna fill their shoes?’”

Indeed! Alan Jackson is right. Though Jones is a template for those who stick with traditional country, his vocal style is incomparable. Yet they still can “fill his shoes” by having the same spirit he’d had in valuing the real sense of good Country music.