Country Music’s Fearless Trailblazer: 5 Times Loretta Lynn Made A Statement With Her Music

Loretta Lynn Country music
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If there’s one thing Loretta Lynn was known for, it’s not pulling punches.

The country music icon passed away at her home in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee last October at 90 years old, leaving behind a legacy that will carry on for quite some time.

Part of that legacy was making statements with her songs. Statements that weren’t always well received by the general public but were true to her beliefs and resonated with many more people than the industry thought they would.

Throughout her career she had 14 songs banned from country radio for being to controversial for the traditionally conservative genre, but the banning tended to have an adverse affect to what they hoped would happen. (Sound familiar?)

The songs didn’t go away. Instead they became anthems for her and the women who felt as if she was speaking for them.

In an interview with Parade, Loretta said it’s all about telling the truth:

“I just write what I feel, what is going on with me and my life. It just happened that a lot of other women felt the same.

I would never set out to write something just for it to shock someone; I am not that clever. It’s always been about truth and if that means radio wants to ban it, well that’s their problem.

Most of my records they banned became No. 1 anyway.”

Here’s five of her biggest statement songs.

The Pill (1975)

This is easily the song that received the most backlash, even leading to a preacher denouncing the album during a sermon. That probably lead to swarms of attendees going out and buying it, but the intent was obvious. It’s a song about a wife telling her husband there’d be no more never ending pregnancies, a strong theme throughout her catalogue, cause she’s got the pill.

The song was banned by at least 60 radio stations throughout the country, yet it had little to no effect on the single’s sales, which peaked at about 15,000 units a week and went to #5 on the country charts.

Rated X (1972)

“Rated X” is her take on how unfair divorce was back in her day, with men getting off pretty much scot-free and women being looked at with shame, yet simultaneously being marked as an easy target for a late night fling. It was the sixth #1 of her career.

Wings Upon Your Horns (1969)

Losing one’s virginity is always a touchy subject, but it get especially more so when religious themes are used to express the idea. But, like we’ve come to love, it didn’t stop Loretta from speaking her mind and making one of the testiest country music songs of its time.

Don’t Come Home A Drinkin’ (With Loving On Your Mind) (1967)

Loretta brought her own life into many of her songs, including this one.

It’s pretty obvious how her 50 year marriage to an alcoholic and a serial cheater brought this song about and feeds many of the other themes we’ve been hearing throughout this list…

Fist City (1968)

While not diving into subjects as touchy as the others, Loretta’s warning to women who flirt with her man while she’s touring was done so directly and forcefully it made people do a double take. It wasn’t common for women to stand up for themselves and was even less common (and viewed as indecent) for a lady to actually get in a fist fight, but ol’ Loretta didn’t care about those social standards one bit.

This is probably my favorite song of hers. The phrase “Fist City” for an ass-whooping is just so great.

We need to start using it more often…

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock