Every country fan knows most stories of Loretta Lynn. She is a great singer and songwriter who helped change the face of country music through her honest and poignant songs. She is not only a country superstar but an American icon. But beyond the myths of the Coal Miner’s Daughter, there are stories that tell us who Loretta Lynn is as a person.
Finally, here are the last two Loretta Lynn stories confining her legacy.
2. Her friendship with Patsy Cline
When Loretta Lynn first relocated to Nashville, Patsy Cline was one of her greatest idols. When Cline was hospitalized after a near-deadly car crash, Lynn sang Cline’s ‘I Fall to Pieces’ on the Midnite Jamboree. She dedicated the performance to Cline. Upon hearing the performance, Cline was so moved that she invited Lynn to come to the hospital to meet her. Right then, the two became best of friends. Cline protected Lynn under her wing, helping her sail the music business and stand up for herself. Lynn confessed that her friendship with Cline made her tougher, saying,
“After I met Patsy, life got better for me because I fought back. Before that, I just took it. I had to. I was 3,000 miles away from my mom and dad and had four little kids. There was nothin’ I could do about it. But later on I starting speakin’ my mind when things weren’t right.”
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1. Her fearlessness
Lynn became an inspiration for working-class women of the 1960s and 70s. She recorded songs like ‘The Pill’, ‘Don’t Come Home a-Drinkin’ (With Lovin’ On Your Mind)’, ‘Rated X’ and ‘One’s on the Way’, which showcased real-life experiences. It touched double standards and challenges women faced. Lynn was a relatable figure who addressed often unnoticed blue-collar subjects. Her song ‘Dear Uncle Sam’ was one of the first country songs to talk about the Vietnam War.
It may be hard to imagine today, but in the ’60s and ’70s, many of Lynn’s songs were tremendously controversial. Some were even initially forbidden to be aired. But being provocative was never her intent. She was simply telling the truth. And we sure did, appreciate it.
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