Where no one stands alone

Saturday, 19 October, 2013

Loretta Webb was born in 1932 in coal-mining country: Butcher Hollow, near Paintsville, Kentucky. When she was 15, she married Oliver Vanetta Lynn, Jr. It was tempestuous relationship but it inspired songs about philandering husbands, domestic violence and blue-collar work. Don’t Come Home A’ Drinkin’ (With Lovin’ on Your Mind), Fist City and Coal Miner’s Daughter are typical Lynn titles. She knew whereof she wrote.

In 1953, on their sixth wedding anniversary, Oliver Vanetta bought his Loretta a $17 Harmony guitar and she taught herself to play. Loretta Lynn cut her first record (Honky Tonk Girl) in February 1960 and Nashville beckoned. To date, she has sold some 50 million albums worldwide.

“Like a king, I may live in a palace so tall
With great riches to call my own
But I don’t know a thing in this whole wide world
That’s worse than being alone.”

Elvis Presley sang this gospel hymn on his 1967 Nashville album How Great Thou Art.

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