Friday, April 26, 2013

George Jones: He Stopped Loving Her Today

George Jones (1931 - 2013)
It was great sadness I read this morning that George Jones passed away at the age of 81.  It's hard to put into words what George Jones meant to country music, and more importantly musicians.

I'm known these days as a writer and novelist, but that's only been over the last few years--for a much longer period of time my hobby was music.  I'm a piano player.  And I started playing in bands back in high school, and played on and off for twenty years.  Some of the first songs I ever played with a band were George Jones songs.  And those songs mean a lot to me--and I'm not the only musician that feels that way.

Not only was George Jones a great singer and stylist, but his songs touched people in a very special way.  They tended to stick with you.  The stories they told were stories you could relate to, and you just can't help yourself, no matter how many times you've heard it before, when a George Jones song comes on the radio, you turn it up and listen to it--and if you happened to be in your car and pull in the driveway when it comes on, you sit in your car in the garage listening to it until it's over.

I've seen a lot of concerts in my lifetime--I love all kinds of music.  But one I have a very clear memory of was seeing George Jones in the early 90s in Danville, IL.  It was probably one of the best concerts I've seen, because he did all those songs I'd come to love over the years, and had played over and over again in the bands I played with.  I realized those songs weren't just George's songs--they were my songs, too.  They belong to all of us, and they mean something different to each of us.  There is unlikely to ever be another quite like George Jones.

Goodbye, George.  We'll miss you, and the world will be just a little less without you in it.

~TEC


P.S. I've been asked a couple times already.  No, George Jones was not a Freemason that I know of.  I checked on that several years ago.  He was on my wish list of men I wanted to profile in my Famous American Freemasons books, but I never found any record that he'd ever joined a lodge.  

Todd E. Creason is an author and novelist whose work includes the award-winning non-fiction historical series Famous American Freemasons and the novels One Last Shot (2011) and A Shot After Midnight (2012). He's currently working on the third novel expected to be released in 2014. All of Todd E. Creason's books are sold at major online booksellers like Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble and are available for both Nook and Kindle.

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