fist city. the original coal miners daughter.

Being a coal miner’s daughter myself, I’m contractually obligated to bring up Loretta Lynn whenever I can swing it. But I’d like to think I’d do it anyway. Even if I weren’t.

When you grow up on in a holler like I did, wanting to overcome the mountains with your art, you sometimes think there’s not a whole lot of women for you look up to. Of course, you think wrong. Of course, I was wrong. I was surrounded by them. Strong, beautiful, creative sorts. But I was a child, and didn’t see it then. Like I see it now. Then, I only saw Loretta and her bologna. Sometimes Dolly and her greasy pole.

See minute 2:00 for classic Loretta

So, because she came from a holler and ate bologna sandwiches and had a father who trucked down into a hole in the ground to make a living, I thought she was like me. And I loved her for it. We all did.

Loretta Lynn wrote songs for women just when they needed writing. Whether she realized it, or not. Women adored her. Even if you weren’t a woman, and even if you’re not – even if you’re Jack White – you still take a bow. Because it’s Loretta Lynn. And she’s a bloody force of nature.

Jack and Loretta

My grandfather thought Loretta had lost her mind when he first saw her perform Portland Oregon. As for me, and all things Jack, that’s a love affair for another day.

2 June 2010: Interview with Loretta Lynn: American Public Radio

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