The country community continues to share their condolences and memories of George Jones who passed away this morning (April 26). Dolly Parton, Merle Haggard, Hank Williams Jr., Randy Travis and Ray Price released statements as they remember their friend and colleague.
“My heart is absolutely broken. George Jones was my all time favorite singer and one of my favorite people in the world. My heart goes out to Nancy and all his family and friends.” — Dolly Parton
“The world has lost the greatest country singer of all time. Amen.” — Merle Haggard
“Today is a sad day in Country music. We have lost another piece of history. George Jones was not only a good singer, but was a good friend. He will be missed by many.” — Hank Williams Jr.
“I am very thankful I got to know George, he’s one of the greatest singers that ever lived. I actually loved the man and really enjoyed the time I got to spend with he and Nancy.” — Randy Travis
“Country music and the world will miss George Jones. He was someone who set a high standard in our industry for great music and lyrics that tapped into the emotions of the human heart at a very deep level. His music has touched the lives of country music lovers for over five decades. My prayers are with his family and I pray for the repose of his soul. May you rest in peace, brother.” — Collin Raye
“There’s a huge emptiness in the music world today from the passing of our good friend George Jones. But, the void is filled with the many memories that will be with us forever. We love you, George.” — The Oak Ridge Boys lead singer Duane Allen
“I believe if you ask any singer who was the greatest country music singer of all time, they would say ‘George Jones’. He was without question and by far the BEST! I first met and worked with him when I was 13 years old; I am so very grateful that he was my friend.” — Barbara Mandrell
“Sad day folks. Today, with the passing of my good friend, George Jones, the door to an era in time is slowly closing. With only a handful of us left standing, the country music I knew and loved has also passed away. It is my great hope that the younger generation of singers will remember all of us from that time and carry on. Thanks all.” — Ray Price
“There aren’t words in our language to describe the depth of his greatness. I’ll miss my kind and generous friend.” — Vince Gill
“I am just devastated by the news that George Jones has passed away! The music world has lost one of the most original and innovative talents that the world has ever known. I feel such a personal loss of not only one of the greatest vocal influences of my life, but also I’ve lost a dear friend. Visits with George have always been full of joy and laughter. Every time I would see him, George would always greet me with a funny story or a joke! His legacy will put his name at the top of the most influential artists in history, right along with Hank Williams, Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings. His voice will be influencing singers 100 years from now and beyond! I’m reminded of the lyrics that Waylon wrote in the tune ‘It’s Alright.’ ‘If we all sang like we wanted to, we’d all sound like George Jones!’” — Travis Tritt
“Today is a dark for country music and music in general. George had become a friend and mentor to us. We will always remember touring with him and how both he and Nancy were so welcoming to us. Rest in peace George… No one will ever fill your shoes!” — The Roys
“Country music has lost one of the great ones today with the passing of George Jones. Rest in peace ‘Possum’, heaven has a new angel.” — Lisa Matassa
“I have no words to express my admiration and love for George Jones. To say he was my ‘hero’ does not do justice to the lifetime impression he made on me, both personally and professionally. George Jones is the foundation of country music and he’s the reason I wanted to perform. He’s the reason I’m still here in this business… out there on the road. He was my mentor and my teacher; George was my friend. He paved the way for so many and I was one of the lucky ones to have enjoyed the opportunity to not only sing beside him, but just ‘sit and visit’ with him. When I was just starting out, we toured together; he was the headliner. After a few shows, he told me that I was going to close the shows (because he wanted to watch “Andy Griffith”). For a newcomer, it was intimidating to open for him; there was even more pressure to close for him. George gave me strength and encouragement; he kept telling me ‘you can do it, son.’ George Jones is the Father of Country. We will all miss his voice, and I will miss his voice to call me ‘son.’” — Mark Chesnutt
“I’ll never forget the incredible experience of singing with George and I will always remember his wonderful sense of humor and down to earth soul. Before I wrote the liner note for his Ladies Choice album, I said a prayer for the right words to a worthy quote that would come close to reflecting the way I feel about George. Here is that quote and it will always be true. ”We are all God’s own individual works of art. In country music, George Jones is his masterpiece…” — Deborah Allen
“The first 8-tracks that I owned were recordings by Conway Twitty and George Jones. Long before my career got started, I was at a concert (Travis Tritt’s homecoming show) and George Jones performed. I sat there and sang along to every word that George sang. A lady, who sat in front of me, turned around and said, ‘do you know George Jones’ music?’ When my reply was, ‘heck yeah,’ she introduced herself; it was his wife, Nancy. Nancy brought me backstage that night to introduce me to George. That was three years before I signed my record deal and we’ve remained friends and stayed in touch since then. Right or wrong, in good times and in bad, people loved George Jones–he made an impression. His music is his legacy and he will not only be remembered as the best country singer this world will ever know, but a great man that we all will truly miss.” — Mark Wills