“She Was Headstrong”

When I was about 12 years old, I watched a movie for the first time that would have a lasting impact on my life.  I just wouldn’t know it until almost 20 years later.  This movie was “Coal Miner’s Daughter”.  At the time, I just really enjoyed it.  I liked Loretta’s tenacity and spunk.  I loved that she was so successful despite the punches that life gave her.  I had a secret crush on Tommy Lee Jones.  But the impact on my life personally wasn’t as strong as it is now.

Fast-forward 21 years and there are a couple of similarities with our lives.  We both grew up poor.  We both have a love for roots music, although mine is in a different vein than hers is.  We both had a sizable passel of kids before starting our music careers.  We both put heart and soul into our music. Neither of us are afraid to tell anyone exactly how we feel or what we think.  We’re both pretty headstrong too.   But I honestly didn’t see the similarities between us until a year ago.  I love that she had success despite having a family first.  I’ve done things a bit backwards, (true to myself,)  in having a large family first before really going full-force into the music industry.  I don’t regret having my large family either.  I only wish that I would have started my music career when I was younger.

This is one of my favorite pictures that I found of her, because it is so reminiscent of what my life is like when I’m not doing the music thing.  My cabinets are full of canned goods.  I’m kind of like a squirrel.  I just keep storing up canned goods, because I want to make sure that I have enough to last until next year.  I ran out of cabinet space last year.

I appreciate Loretta’s frank songwriting style.  I love her willingness to push the buck as to what was acceptable to society in the 1970’s.  I love that she sang and traveled despite the pressures that family can bring AND SUCCEEDED.   There is a phrase in wikipedia’s article on her that stuck with me. “She was headstrong”, it said.  Some people don’t like headstrong individuals, but really you have to be in order to make it in the music industry.  Loretta had to be headstrong to deal with a philandering husband, 6 children and, I’m sure, of a bunch of music executives trying to boss her around.  She stuck to her guns.  She didn’t quit.  She stayed married.  I think that is admirable.  “She was headstrong” and I’m glad for it.  It inspires me and keeps me going.  This summer we’re planning on going to Hurricane Mills to her ranch.  I love Loretta Lynn. 🙂


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