George Jones Celebrates Turning 80 With Friends and Family in Nashville
George Jones celebrated turning 80-years-old this week. To honor the living legend, the Possum's family, fans and famous friends gathered at Nashville's famed music club and restaurant Rippy's on Tuesday night, where they mingled and talked about the greatness of the man of the hour.
"There's just no way I could have missed this," Jason Michael Carroll told Taste of Country at the party. "[He is] a living legend! We've had several times of working with him at the Grand Ole Opry, and I [was] not going to miss this for anything!"
Travis Tritt, David Lee Murphy, Elaine Roy of bluegrass due the Roys, Eddie Raven, Jamie Dailey of Dailey and Vincent, Bryan White, songwriter Billy Yates, and country-gospel singer Guy Penrod were all on hand to help celebrate the milestone in Jones' life.
Upon his arrival at Rippy's, Jones was presented with his customized birthday cake -- a possum -- as those in attendance all sang Happy Birthday to the music icon.
"This means everything," a humbled and appreciative Jones told Taste of Country of the turnout. "I'm just overwhelmed. They're all wonderful people."
Following the gathering at Rippy's, Jones and friends headed to the Grand Ole Opry, where the evening's main event took place. Mark Wills, Carrie Underwood, Jamey Johnson, Lee Ann Womack, Joe Diffie, Alan Jackson, the Oak Ridge Boys, Montgomery Gentry and many others all paid tribute to the singer by taking the stage throughout the night, performing their own tributes to Jones.
Throughout his career, Jones has charted over 150 singles, including his mega-hit 'He Stopped Loving Her Today,' 'Why Baby Why,' 'White Lightnin'' and 'Choices.'