Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Country Music Month: The Texas Connection:Two Words - The Possum

George Glenn Jones, The Possum, was born seventy-nine years ago in Saratoga, Texas, destined to be one of the greatest, if not the greatest, country singers in history. My only argument with that is a man named Hank Williams. Still, Jones is easily in the Top 5 of the Greatest All Time Country Singers. Jones has the God-given gift of interpreting a song like few others can. A prime example is He Stopped Loving Her Today. Please take about four minutes of your time to listen to that performance. In my lifetime and during a fifteen year radio career, I have NEVER heard someone sing a song with such power, emotion and the feel of experiencing the song as it's being sung. Pretty much everybody who has listened to Country Music for any length of time, knows about the personal demons in George Jones' life - alcohol, drugs, so on and so forth. Jones finally beat those demons, thanks to his fourth wife Nancy. One quick story, then on to his music. During his marriage to Tammy Wynette when he was a booze hound, Tammy took the car keys away from George so he couldn't go to the liquor store. But, the Possum is a crafty creature and can find ways to do things that others can not. The solution to Jones' dilemma? The riding lawnmower! Liquor store here I come! Jones was nothing if not an inventive drunk on this occasion. There's a hell of a lot more I could write about George Jones' life, but I'll leave that to Wikipedia. I want to delve into his music.
For over fifty years, the man called The Possum has been crankin' out hits, so any effort to list them here would prove futile. I, therefore, highly encourage you to pay a visit to this YouTube page of George Jones songs. Now if you'll excuse me, I have a date with a riding lawnmower.

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All Original Material © Toby Shoemaker