Loretta Lynn (born Loretta Webb on April 14, 1934) is an American actress, country music singer-songwriter, author, business woman, and philanthropist. She was one of the leading country vocalists and songwriters during the 1960s, and continues to be one of the most successful vocalists of all time.
In the '60s and '70s, Lynn achieved over 70 hits as a solo artist and a duet partner. Her best-selling 1976 autobiography, “Coal Miner's Daughter,” was made into a hit Academy Award-winning film starring Sissy Spacek and Tommy Lee Jones in 1980.
Including solo and duet work, Loretta Lynn has released 16 number one country hits over the course of her career.
Her recording career includes fifty four studio albums, fifteen compilation albums, one tribute album, eighty eight singles, seven music videos, and four B-sides. After recording and releasing her debut single on Zero Records entitled, "I'm a Honky Tonk Girl," Lynn signed a recording contract with the major label, Decca in 1961.
In 1962, Lynn's single, "Success" became her first Top 10 single on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart, which set the trend for seven Top 10 singles between 1963 and 1966, such as "Before I'm Over You," "Happy Birthday," "Dear Uncle Sam," and "You Ain't Woman Enough (To Take My Man)."
Decca also issued Lynn's first studio albums during these years: “Loretta Lynn Sings” (1963), “Before I'm Over You” (1964), “Songs from My Heart” (1965), “Blue Kentucky Girl” (1965), “I Like 'em Country” (1966), and “You Ain't Woman Enough” (1966). In 1967, the single, "Don't Come Home A' Drinkin' (With Lovin' on Your Mind)," was her first number one single on the Billboard Country Chart, and a studio album of the same name was also issued, becoming the first country album by a female artist to be certified by the RIAA.
The success set the trend for seven Top 10 hits and two additional number ones between 1967 and 1969, including "Fist City" and "Woman of the World (Leave My World Alone)." Lynn also released seven studio albums during these next two years, including two collaborations with Ernest Tubb.
In late 1970, the single, "Coal Miner's Daughter" became her fourth number one single, while also peaking at #83 on the Billboard Hot 100. An album of the same name also was issued and certified gold in the United States. The following year, Lynn began her ten year collaboration with country artist, Conway Twitty, releasing ten studio albums, including 1971's “We Only Make Believe,” which was also certified gold in the United States, as well as 1971's “Lead Me On.”
Most of their singles, including "After the Fire Is Gone," "Lead Me On," "As Soon as I Hang Up the Phone", and "Feelin's" were number one country singles. In 1971, Lynn had three Top 10 singles, including the number one hit, "One's on the Way." The following year,
"Rated X" was another number one country single and Decca would issue three studio albums. Between 1974 and 1976, Lynn had a string of Top 10 hits, such as "The Pill" (1975) and "Somebody Somewhere (Don't Know What He's Missin' Tonight)" (1976) which was Lynn's fourteenth number one on the Billboard Country Chart.
In 1977, Lynn recorded a tribute album to country artist, Patsy Cline entitled,” I Remember Patsy,” which spawned two major hits of Cline's recordings, including "She's Got You" (1977). She had her last number one single the following year with "Out of My Head and Back in My Bed" and three solo Top 10 hits until the end of the decade: "We've Come a Long Way Baby" (#10), "I Can't Feel You Anymore" (#3), and "I've Got a Picture of Us on My Mind" (#5).
Her success on the Billboard chart decreased by 1980, making her 1982 single, "I Lie" the final Top 10 hit of her career. In 1985 she had her final major hit with "Heart Don't Do This to Me" (#19) and her final MCA albums, “Just a Woman” (1985) and “Who Was That Stranger” (1988) were also issued. In 1993, Lynn collaborated with Dolly Parton and Tammy Wynette on the album, Honky Tonk Angels, which was certified gold in the United States. After a seven year hiatus, Lynn returned to recording with Still Country (2000) on Audium Records.
In 2004, Lynn issued her most recent studio album to date entitled, “Van Lear Rose.” The album was produced by The White Stripes member, Jack White and reached #2 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart and #24 on the Billboard 200. Loretta Lynn has sold five million records according to the RIAA.