While many country fans cite George Jones‘ “He Stopped Loving Her Today” as the greatest country song of all time, Ray Scott holds another single released that same year in the esteemed position: Don Williams’ “Good Ole Boys Like Me.” In the latest installment of Scott’s “Roots Sessions,” premiering exclusively on Rolling Stone Country, he interprets Williams’ nostalgic 1980 ballad, written by Bob McDill, with an extra helping of gravitas. (Watch the performance above.)
“‘Good Ole Boys Like Me’ is my absolute favorite song. Don Williams was my favorite voice and Bob McDill was one of my favorite writers,” Scott says. “That song was different back then, and it’d be different now too, because there are so many literary layers to it. The song is a lot smarter than most of what makes it out on radio. Even back then, I think they were afraid the song wouldn’t be played on radio, and lo and behold it went to Number Two.”
A six-video series, Scott’s “Roots Sessions” have thus far found the baritone vocalist covering classics by Merle Haggard and Tompall Glaser. His homage to Williams — who is still recording and released the underrated album Reflections last year — is the third, and the one closest to Scott’s musical heart.
“There is just so much said in the song, so many things referenced. It’s brilliant,” he says. “It’s spoken to me for a lot of years.”