Country music legend George Jones (aka “The Possum”), a man credited with having the finest voice in the recorded history of country music, passed away on April 26, 2013.
In honor of the man who started out as a hardcore honky tonker in the tradition of Hank Williams but, over the course of his career, developed an affecting, nuanced ballad style, Portland, Oregon-based independent record label Deer Lodge Records put together a two-CD, thirty-track collection of songs from artists across the West Coast, paying homage to “The Possum.”
Produced by Deer Lodge’s Ezra Meredith and Bert Sperling, the album spans the gamut from punk, bluegrass, post-modern pop, and even reggae, putting Jones’ songs in a different light while giving them praise.
When asked why Deer Lodge decided to do a tribute to George Jones, Deer Lodge Studios owner and co-producer Ezra Meredith quickly states, “he’s the greatest singer of all time.”
The process for picking the bands on the tribute album, which includes heavy Northwest hitters including Sassparilla, Fernando, Water Tower, Drunken Prayer, Lewi Longmire & Portland Country Underground, Hearts of Oak, and Meredith Brothers, to name a few, started with Sperling and Meredith picking artists they knew and respected, then they “reached out to some personal heroes of mine and artists that I’d always wanted to work with,” says Sperling.
The end result is something Sperling and Meredith are very proud of, something they are happy to stamp the Deer Lodge name all over.
[audio:Tennessee Whiskey.mp3|titles=Tennessee Whiskey|artists=Brush Prairie]
“Tennessee Whiskey” by Brush Prairie (Tribute to George Jones)