I emailed someone today to acknowledge and pay my respects to the great Loretta Lynn. I would have to say hands down that she was favorite female country singer. One of the things I always found most intriguing about Lynn was how little she spoke publicly while seeming to emanate so much wisdom and intelligence. The cliche of country music is that its essence boils down to three chords and truth. With no one was this truer than Lynn; sexuality, motherhood, marital strife, spirituality, and just the everyday struggles of life were all grist for her mill. As a cultural figure she also seemed to cut across generations and fan bases in a way that, unlike with certain other country artists of her time who latched on to whatever genre was happening at the moment, seemed uncontrived. I have no way to verify this, but I read this morning that more Loretta Lynn songs were banned from the radio in the twentieth century than those of all male Country Western artists combined. It seems plausible. Outlaw artists singing about dance floors and booze is one thing, but a woman discussing the independence accorded her via The Pill at the height of the Sexual Revolution was too much for many.

Like so many, for Loretta Lynn it began with gospel and the church.