George Jones: Born Into Poverty, Rose to Become a Superstar

Humble Beginnings

Jones was born to a poor and large family but his family status didn’t stop him from dreaming. Aware of the musical talents he’s been gifted with, Jones made use of his only possession to help in providing for his family. Accordingly, the young Jones began performing on the streets to earn money. The Texas-born Jones was one of the eight children in his family. George Jones noted in his autobiography I Lived to Tell It All that his father was an alcoholic who turned into a monster when drunk. But when he’s sober, he was the best father his children could ever have. In fact, he gave Jones his first guitar which he used to perform on the street.

In the midst of their impoverished condition, Jones and his family were rich with one thing. That is their love of music. Oftentimes, they would sing hymns together and listen to records of great musicians such as The Carter Family. Moreover, the family was a loyal listener of programs from the Grand Ole Opry. Soon after Jones entered teenage years, he began performing in dive bars and by the age of 16, he worked as a singer at a local radio station. During his stint with KTXJ, Jones developed a strong admiration for Hank Williams’ music.

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