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Stars Celebrate Loretta Lynn At Public Memorial In Nashville

Loretta Lynn may have passed away earlier this month, but her musical legacy lives on and last night some of the biggest names in country music appeared at the Grand Ole Opry House for “Coal Miner’s Daughter: A Celebration of the Life & Music of Loretta Lynn” a public memorial honoring the legend.

The show opened with taped words from Loretta herself, thanking her fans and her friends, for the “life and the love you have given to me,” and then Wynonna Judd, the Gaithers and Larry Strickland sang the Christian hymn “How Great Thou Art.”

After some words from host Jenna Bush Hager, Keith Urban performed “You’re Looking At Country,” but first he played a voicemail message from Loretta inviting him to her birthday party in 2018 with Loretta sharing, “Hey Keith, this is Loretta and I’m having a birthday and I wanna see your butt there.”

  • Among the night’s other performances: good friend Tanya Tucker performed “Blue Kentucky Girl,” Darius Rucker performed “Fist City,” Alan Jackson performed “Where Her Heart Has Always Been,” George Strait sang “Don’t Come Home A-Drinkin’(With Lovin’ On Your Mind),” Little Big Town performed “Let Her Fly,” Loretta’s good friend Jack White, who was a last minute addition to the tribute, performed “Van Lear Rose,” the title track of her 2004 comeback album, which he produced, Emmy Russell and Lukas Nelson performed “Lay Me Down,” Loretta’s duet with Lukas’ dad Willie Nelson, Margo Price performed “The Pill,” Brandi Carlile performed “She’s Got You,” and The Highwomen sang her classic “Coal Miner’s Daughter.”
  • There were also several artists to shared their thoughts and memories of Loretta, including Kacey Musgraves, Barbara Mandrell, Kid Rock, Martina McBride, Dolly Parton, Reba McEntire  Sissy Spacek, and more.
  • Tim McGraw and Faith Hill talked about Loretta’s trailblazing when it comes to songwriting about women and for women, with Faith holding back tears. “Loretta was unabashedly honest about hardships and joys of being a wife and mother, a woman loving life — loving, lying ,cheating, having babies, not having babies…she sang about it all,” Faith said. “She was fierce and proud of who she was, where she came from and how she lived her life,” adding, “She didn’t push boundaries for women in country music, she shredded them.”
  • Taylor Swift, even made a surprise appearance by video, sharing, “I’m so grateful to Loretta for being an example, not only for songwriters everywhere, but more specifically female songwriters,” adding, “She was so ahead of her time. The way she exercised brutal, truthful, fearless honesty every time she sat down to write a song is something that changed music forever and paved the way for every songwriter who’s trying to be truthful and honest today.”