"The Possum," as George Jones is famously called, was known for showing up late, or more often, not at all to his concerts once upon a time. After next year however, his absence will be intentional -- and, according to Jones, permanent.
In a statement released earlier today, Jones revealed that he is "ready to slow down and spend more time with his wife, children and grandchildren." To that end, he'll embark on "The Grand Tour" next year, hitting 60 cities (which haven't been revealed yet) and doling out the chestnuts like He Stopped Loving Her Today or I Don't Need Your Rockin' Chair one last time. "It is tough to stop doing what I love, but the time has come," Jones said in the statement.
And although there's no release date yet, Jones also has plans to record a new studio effort and, the statement said, Dolly Parton is writing songs for Jones. "It will be an album he loves and wants to do," according to Jones's publicist. Back at full strength after being sidelined by an upper respiratory infection earlier this year, Jones will play the Arlington Music Hall Oct. 5. If you were on the fence about going, consider this fair warning to change your mind.