What George Jones Told Alan Jackson

“I Would’ve Done That Anyway”

During Sunday night’s (Oct. 22) Country Music Hall of Fame Medallion Ceremony, Alan Jackson received his medal and became an official Hall of Famer. And during the festivities at the museum’s CMA Theater, Jackson opened up about how people have interpreted his quiet side over the years.

So when he was a car salesman, he said, he was a good one. “I was a good car salesman. And I’m not really shy, I’m just kind of socially awkward,” Jackson told the crowd, “and mainly I just don’t like to talk much. As a car salesman, I was good because I knew cars and I knew what people needed, so I helped them.”

According to Country Aircheck, when it came to songwriting, Jackson said he’d always maintained the write-what-you-know style of crafting songs.

“I wrote what I knew. My daddy was a mechanic, I grew up in a garage and that’s all I cared about. That’s the reason I moved to Nashville to become a singer. I loved cars, and I couldn’t really buy any. I didn’t see much of a future of being able to buy a lot of cars and being a singing star looked like the only shot I had,” he shared.

What kept Jackson on his straight-up country path was some advice George Jones had given him in the early days. “He told me the first time I met him: ’Keep it country.’ I would have done that anyway, but it meant so much coming from him.

“I just hope there are going to be some young people coming along who really care about it as much as I have and try to keep it alive. It’s going to be hard today. You won’t hear it on the radio anymore, but there’s still a lot of people out there, young and old, who want to hear what I call real country music.”

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.