Loretta Lynn: 1932-2022

(Photo by Rich Fury/Invision/AP, File)

Country music icon Loretta Lynn has passed away at age 90.

TMZ reports that she died at her Tennessee home of natural causes.

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Lynn’s hit single “Coal Miner’s Daughter” and the award-winning biographical film of the same name detail her humble origins. She was the second of eight children, and her siblings include songwriters Jay Webb and Patsy Webb and country-pop singer Crystal Gayle.

In 1948, at the age of 15, she married Oliver “Doolittle” Lynn, and they remained married until his death in 1996. They had six children together, four of whom survived them, including daughter Patsy Lynn Russell, who co-produced her mother’s last few albums.

Lynn signed her first recording contract in 1960, and success followed soon after. She recorded duets with Conway Twitty that sold millions of records as well as 50 solo albums, the most recent in 2021. Lynn won three Grammys and a slew of other awards as well.

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She wasn’t afraid to court controversy with her songs, many of which explored what we might call feminist themes today. Radio didn’t always warm to songs like “The Pill” and “Rated X,” but that didn’t stop them from becoming hits. She also managed to maintain a tough, independent streak in many of her songs.

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Lynn had a complex relationship with politics. She performed at the White House for Democrats and Republicans alike and maintained a long friendship with Jimmy Carter even as she donated to Republican candidates. Barack Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom, yet she campaigned for Donald Trump on tour in 2016.

She continued to record and tour late into her life, although a 2017 stroke and a 2018 broken hip put an end to her touring days. She’s now with the God to Whom she dedicated her multiple Gospel albums. Pray for her family during this time.

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