I have always felt it an honor to be recognized for an accomplished life that gave so much to others. The Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum will explore the life and career of Loretta Lynn, a Country Music Hall of Fame member and 2017 Grammy nominee for Best Country Album (2016’s Full Circle). The exhibition, “Loretta Lynn: Blue Kentucky Girl” opens Aug. 25, 2017, and runs through Aug. 5, 2018.
By telling her own truths, and by writing about her experiences with a perspective and voice unlike any other Southern storyteller, Loretta has become an American hero and a country music standard-bearer. Her one-of-a-kind tale has been told in a feature film (with an Oscar-winning portrayal of herself by Sissy Spacek), two autobiographies and an American Masters public television documentary. But her fascinating journey is worthy of further exploration. Examining the Coal Miner’s Daughter through her music and her rich collection of personal artifacts will provide fresh insights into one of country music’s most important artists.
“Owen Bradley once described Loretta Lynn as ‘the female Hank Williams,’” said museum CEO Kyle Young. “Like Williams did, Loretta has created music that echoes the challenges and joys of the working class. She has influenced countless artists who followed her, and her unique sound continues to transcend genre and inspire her many listeners. We are thrilled to share the story of this ‘blue Kentucky girl,’ and we look forward to the day when Loretta feels well enough to see the exhibit herself.”
“I am so excited for the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s exhibit to open this month,” said Loretta. “It’s gonna show off my 50 some odd years in country music, and I’m so proud to share my life and music with the museum. Y’all come see us!” The musical icon suffered a stroke in May and is currently focusing on her recovery.
“Loretta Lynn: Blue Kentucky Girl” exhibition highlights include:
Lynn’s original handwritten manuscript for her chart-topping 1970 hit, “Coal Miner’s Daughter.”
The 1956 model 99 Singer sewing machine Lynn used to make her own stage clothes very early in her career.
American DR-332 ribbon microphone used by Lynn at her first recording session, in Western Recorders Studio, Los Angeles, February 1960. She cut her first single, “I’m a Honky Tonk Girl,” and three more original songs at the session.
Red-and-white polka-dot dress with sequins and silver-cord trim, made by Lynn when she was fourteen. Sissy Spacek wore the dress when she portrayed Lynn in the film Coal Miner’s Daughter.
Presidential Medal of Freedom, presented to Lynn by President Obama in 2013.
Green chiffon Lillie Rubin gown worn by Lynn at the 1972 CMA Awards, where she was named Entertainer of the Year.
1956 Gibson J-50, used extensively by Lynn in performance and for songwriting. It was given to her in 1961 by her husband, Doolittle “Mooney” Lynn, who made the Formica pickguard.
Red dress embellished with beads and sequins, worn by Lynn on the cover of her 1968 album Fist City.
One of the most visited museums in the United States, with an unduplicated collection of more than 2.5 million artifacts, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum celebrates its fiftieth anniversary in 2017. This installation joins a year offering revealing exhibitions on subjects including Jason Aldean and Shania Twain. For more information go to countrymusichalloffame.org