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From the Country Standard Time Archives

George Jones: same old, same old, same old great singer

Indian Ranch, Webster, Mass., Sunday, July 16, 2000

By Stuart Munro

WEBSTER, MA - Back in the day, George Jones had a hit on a song called "Same Ole Me." That could just as easily serve as a description of a George Jones show. That's exactly what Jones delivered in exactly an hour's worth of singing, and the capacity crowd, which came knowing exactly what to expect, soaked it up (as well as the sun and the suds).

The same ole: a short prefatory set from The Jones Boys, before Jones makes his entrance; pretty much a standard set (or in Jones's case what is the same thing, a set of standards -"Once You've Had the Best," "The Race Is On," "Bartender's Blues," "Who's Gonna Fill Their Shoes," "I'm A One Woman Man"), updated with a few cuts from Jones's latest release.

In this case, that meant four songs from "Cold Hard Truth." Jones introduced that album's "Choices" with a reference to "a little bad luck" he had last year; the crowd knew exactly what he was talking about, and responded loudly to the song.

Interspersed among all this, a few fiddle tunes from long-time band member Jim Buchanan; more-or-less midway through the set, a medley of the greatest of the greatest hits (because, as Jones tells the audience, it would take a week to sing all of 'em all the way through), typically comprised of snippets of "I'll Share My World With You," "Window Up Above," "The Grand Tour," "Walk Through This World With Me," and maybe one or two others (this time around, "White Lightnin'" and "She Thinks I Still Care" made the cut).

Then, Jones wraps things up with the perfect country song "He Stopped Loving Her Today," followed by Jones' closer in recent years, "Rockin' Chair."

In other words, basically the same show you saw the last time you went to see George Jones, which means you get to hear some of the greatest country music of all time, sung by the greatest country singer of all time; what more do you need?