ARTIST: George Jones
TITLE: The Essential George Jones: The Spirit of Country
YEAR RELEASED: Compilation
CHART ACTION: None
SINGLES: Top Three Country: Just One More (#3), White Lightning (#1), The Window Up Above (#2), Tender Years (#1), She Thinks I Still Care (#1), The Race Is On (#3), Walk Through This World with Me (#1), A Good Year for the Roses (#2), Loving You Could Never Be Better (#2), We’re Gonna Hold On (#1), Once You’ve Had the Best (#3), The Grand Tour (#1), The Door (#1), Her Name Is (#3), Golden Ring (#1), Near You (#1), He Stopped Loving Her Today (#1), Still Doin’ Time (#1), I Always Get Lucky with You (#1), Tennessee Whiskey (#2), She’s My Rock (#2), Who’s Gonna Fill Their Shoes (#3)
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: I’m sure there are.
LINEUP: George Jones and session musicians. One cut has Melba Montgomery and a few have Tammy Wynette
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Country music legend’s career spanning collection (well, his 1955-1989 career) has a few holes, but it’s the best bet for a good overview.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: I put this in the What’s Missing section, but this collection is not streaming in whole. The first half of the first disc isn’t available streaming on this collection, due to rights. You CAN find them streaming and put it together that way.
I used four collections in total for this. There are decent overviews out there for his 1955-62 work and 1972-1989 work. There’s a 90-track collection if you are so inclined. Not all of those contain all of his Musicor Records hits, but you can find them out there if you are patient with your searching.
As for this collection, look at the hits, and there are other great songs on here as well. Despite his reputation as “No Show” Jones and his marital and women issues, he is one of the keystones of country music, and a must have in any collection.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: There are some Tammy Wynette duets here, but I’ll review that collection in full detail at a later point.
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No, but there are bigger collections streaming and huge collections if you’re willing to pay.
GRADE: A: If he had just recorded “He Stopped Loving Her Today”, “A Good Year for the Roses” and “She Thinks I Still Care”, that would make a career.