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Legendary Country Singer-Songwriter George Riddle Dies

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Legendary country singer and songwriter George Riddle died on Saturday (July 19) following a battle with throat cancer. He was 78.

Riddle, who is probably best known for his role as the original Jones Boy, leaves behind an undeniable impact on country music. He backed George Jones in his band, and it was just the two of them when the legendary act started. Riddle also had the privilege of being a regular fiddle player on the iconic Grand Ole Opry stage.

Riddle wasn’t just a talented musician, however. He also spent a lot of writing for established artists including Jones, Ray Charles, Tammy Wynette, Mickey Gilley, Del Reeves, Melba Montgomery and Margie Singleton. Riddle penned 13 songs for Jones alone.

The late singer-songwriter was born on September 1,1935 in Marion, Indiana. Later, Riddle would join the U.S. Army, serving from 1958 to 1960. He then decided to purse his true love and packed up and moved to Nashville, which is where he met Jones, and they formed a friendship inside and outside of music.

His latest musical endeavor included being a host on Indiana’s WCJC 99.3 FM, where he hosted a classic country radio show.

During his lifetime, Riddle received some big honors, including winning  R.O.P.E. awards (also known as Reunion of Professional Entertainers) for his contributions to music.

Next: More Country Artists Who Died in 2014

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