Unbeknownst to many, George Jones and Tammy Wynette, famously known as the power couple “Mr. & Mrs. Country Music,” left an indelible mark on the genre. Prior to their marriage in 1969, both artists had successful solo careers. However, their collaboration as a duo produced a string of timeless hits, such as “We’re Gonna Hold On,” “Let’s Build A World Together,” and “Golden Ring.”
Their combined talents as singers, songwriters, and performers elevated their music to extraordinary heights. Even as solo artists, they continued to create remarkable compositions for one another. Notably, Jones had a repertoire of cherished classics that he co-wrote with Wynette. Here are three notable examples:
“Never Grow Cold” – George Jones (1971)
Written by George Jones and Tammy Wynette, “Never Grow Cold” emerged as an enchanting ballad capturing the early days of their musical partnership. Jones serenades, “Some folks live like a king, think they have everything / With great riches and treasures untold / Well, we don’t help what they do, but when our day is through / We’ve got love that would never grow cold.” The lyrics brim with hope, symbolizing the freshness of their marriage and the unbreakable bond they shared.
“Wine (You’ve Used Me Long Enough)” – George Jones (1973)
Authored by both George Jones and Tammy Wynette, “Wine (You’ve Used Me Long Enough)” delves into the trials and tribulations of their tumultuous relationship. Jones soulfully croons, “The roads you’ve dragged me down were much too rough / Wine, you’ve used me long enough / Warm red wine, you’ve used me long enough…” This candid song reflects the strain caused by Jones’ struggle with substance abuse, which ultimately led to the dissolution of their marriage a few years later.
“These Days (I Barely Get By)” – George Jones (1975)
A poignant creation from the pens of George Jones and Tammy Wynette, “These Days (I Barely Get By)” resonates with sorrow and heartbreak. Jones laments, “These days I barely get by / I want to give up, lay down and die / Worst of all was when she told me goodbye / Whoa, these days I barely get by.” The somber composition serves as a requiem for the love they once shared, as it was recorded during the final stages of their divorce.
Through their artistic collaboration, George Jones and Tammy Wynette left an enduring legacy in country music. These three lesser-known classics showcase their ability to capture raw emotions and create music that continues to touch the hearts of listeners to this day.