Country music icon George Jones has been chosen to receive a 2008 Kennedy Center Honor. Jones, who has been called, the “greatest living country singer,” earned his reputation by diving so deeply into a song’s lyrics that listeners couldn’t help but feel an emotional connection to the song and the singer. The country legend first hit the charts in 1955 and since then has won two Grammys, numerous CMA and ACM Awards, has been inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, and still headlines nearly 100 shows a year.

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“I am completely overwhelmed to be the recipient of a Kennedy Center Honor,” said Jones. “I can’t believe that I have been included in the same company as previous winners that are country music legends: Dolly Parton, Johnny Cash, Loretta Lynn, Roy Acuff and Willie Nelson. Since I was a young man, I have just done what I love and that is sing country music, and I never dreamed that something this special would happen to me. I am completely humbled and will be proud to accept the award!”

Since 1978, the Kennedy Center Honors have redefined America’s perception of its artistic legacy and reinvented the way this nation rewards artists. The Honors have been compared to a knighthood in Britain, or the French Legion of Honor. At the same time, the annual addition of Honors recipients charts the international standard of excellence set by America’s artists, as well as the aesthetic inspiration provided by artists of other nations who have achieved prominence on these shores.

The Honors gala is the Kennedy Center’s most important annual fundraising event, supporting its performing arts, education, and outreach programs. In addition to the gala performance in the Center Opera House, the Honorees are treated to a White House reception and banquet.

Bandit Records released GEORGE JONES - BURN YOUR PLAYHOUSE DOWN: the unreleased duets, a collection of never before heard duets between Jones and his illustrious guests on August 19, 2008. The recordings range from the mid-70s with his ex-wife, the “First Lady of Country Music,” Tammy Wynette to the most recent recording from 2007 with his daughter, Georgette, the only child from the union of George and Tammy.

For more information on the Kennedy Center Honors, please visit and click on Awards.

For more information on George Jones, please visit his website