1997: George Jones & Patty Loveless Team Up For “You Don’t Seem To Miss Me”
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The ’90s were arguably the best decade for country music. There was a great appreciation for country legends while newcomers were bringing their own twist to the genre. LeAnn Rimes, Shania Twain, Trisha Yearwood, Kenny Chesney and Keith Urban were just getting their careers off the ground, while George Strait, Alan Jackson, Garth Brooks, and Reba McEntire were riding high on their own career successes.
Country music legends like Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash, Waylon Jennings, Merle Haggard, George Jones and others were still alive in the ’90s and heavily influencing up and coming artists.
The decade also brought us some memorable collaborations like “Rockin’ Years” (Dolly Parton and Ricky Van Shelton), “From This Moment On” (Shania Twain and Bryan White), and “Honky Tonkin’s What I Do Best” (Travis Tritt and Marty Stuart). But, perhaps one of the most iconic duets came from Patty Loveless and George Jones.
By 1997, Patty Loveless was considered an industry veteran with a dozen years of hits to her credit. George Jones had secured his legend status with nearly four decades of hits, including “Why Baby Why,” “White Lightnin’,” and “He Stopped Loving Her Today.” But, despite his prior success, country radio was tough on George Jones in the ’90s. His last solo song to see any measure of radio success was “I Don’t Need Your Rockin’ Chair,” released in 1992. But, that didn’t keep Jones from singing.
It goes without saying that Patty Loveless and George Jones teaming up for a duet was going to be pure gold.
“You Don’t Seem To Miss Me” was released as the lead single for Patty Loveless’ ninth studio album, Long Stretch of Lonesome, and became a hit for Loveless and Jones. The collab won the pair the 1998 CMA Award for Musical Event of the Year.
The song features Patty Loveless singing lead with harmony vocals provided by George Jones. In 1997, the pair took the stage at the 31st Annual CMA Awards to perform “You Don’t Seem To Miss Me” live, a moment that will go down as one of the best awards show performances in country music history.
Loveless kicked off the song alone on stage. But, when George joined her to lend his vocals to the tune, the crowd cheered and applauded, a testament to the love his fellow artists had for him. Jones looked almost shy as he stood toward the back of the stage singing, only moving to the front after being kindly summoned by Loveless. She held his hand, almost as if she was comforting him and giving him assurance as he sang.
The beautiful performance is worth watching over and over again as a reminder of the talents both artists brought to the country music genre.