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Dolly Parton leads tributes to Loretta Lynn

“So sorry to hear about my sister, friend Loretta,” said the singer.

“We’ve been like sisters all the years we’ve been in Nashville and she was a wonderful human being.”

Lynn, who is best known for the song Coal Miner’s Daughter, has also received tributes from Carole King, Carrie Underwood, Billy Ray Cyrus, and Jack White.

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She was referred to as a “mother figure” and “the finest female singer-songwriter of the 20th century” by White, who collaborated with the celebrity on an album in 2004.

“She was such an incredible presence and such a brilliant genius in ways that I think only people who got to work with her might know about,” he said in an Instagram video.

“What she did for feminism, women’s rights in a time period, in a genre of music that was the hardest to do it in, is just outstanding and will live on for a long time.

“She broke down a lot of barriers for people that came after her.”

The country music icon passed away on Tuesday in her Hurricane Mills, Tennessee, home, according to a statement from her family.

At a time when country music frequently silenced the voices of women, she rose to fame by writing songs about their problems. Her lyrics were replete with autobiographical elements from her own, frequently tumultuous marriage as well as rural pride, grit, and tenacity. 

The country music queen 90-year-old Loretta Lynn passes away

Dolly Parton leads tributes to Loretta Lynn
Dolly Parton leads tributes to Loretta Lynn

She was the second of eight siblings, and her defining song, Coal Miner’s Daughter, described her modest upbringing in a one-room log cabin in Butcher Hollow, Kentucky.

Other songs that became successful, such as The Fist, Rated X, and Don’t Come Home A-Drinkin’, portrayed strong women standing up to dishonest men.

Up to now I’ve been an object made for pleasin’ you,” she sang on 1978’s We’ve Come A Long Way, Baby. “Times have changed and I’m demanding satisfaction too.

Despite upsetting the conservative country music radio programmers with some of her songs, like The Pill, which praised reproductive freedom, she nevertheless achieved 16 number one hits and had a lasting impact on generations.

“I sure appreciate her paving the rough and rocky road for all us girl singers,” said country star Reba McEntire on Instagram.

“She blazed so many trails for all of us girls in country music,” agreed Miranda Lambert.

“It’s safe to say I wouldn’t even be making country music today if it weren’t for Loretta Lynn,” added Margo Price. “Her writing was as real as the day was long.”

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In a lengthy Instagram post, Carrie Underwood detailed her first experience with Lynn, which took place at Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry.

“I was chatting in the corner with another artist and someone walked behind me and smacked me on the rear end!” she recalled.

“I turned around and there she was, in a big sparkly dress, laughing as she continued to walk down the hall at what she had just done.

“This is one of my most favourite stories to tell. I think it sums up her personality pretty well. She was a cantankerous little pistol… friendly and sweet… never afraid to be herself and speak her mind.”

Underwood added: “She is irreplaceable. She will be incredibly missed… but her legacy lives on in those of us whom she has influenced.”

Carole King called Lynn an “inspiration” while k.d. lang described her as “joyous, fierce, one of a kind“.

Billy Ray Cyrus said that “one of my highest honours” came when Lynn agreed to duet with him and George Jones on the song Country Music Has The Blues.

“She handed me this wonderful gift on that day,” he added, alongside a photo of a signed copy of Lynn’s album Van Lear Rose.

Lynn’s half-sister and fellow country star Crystal Gayle simply tweeted: “The world lost a legend. We lost a sister. Love you, Loretta.”

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