Her voice, unmistakable. Her lyrics, detail-rich poetry that told the stories of her Appalachian raising.
She was an oversized influence in music, and it's impossible to conceive of how to pay tribute to her on the day of her passing.
Loretta Lynn has left us. According to a family statement shared by CBS and several other media outlets, "Our precious mom, Loretta Lynn, passed away peacefully this morning, October 4th, in her sleep at home in her beloved ranch in Hurricane Mills."
Earlier this year on the occasion of Lynn's 90th birthday, C&I and several contemporary country stars collaborated to toast the artist and her unparalleled musical legacy. Read that piece here and listen to a playlist of Loretta's iconic hits below.
I've been lucky enough to see Loretta Lynn live twice. A few years ago she took over Stubb's in Austin for an unforgettable SXSW show -- she showed all the young fans how it was done. But I remember most the show she played with her family band in 2012 at Dallas' Winspear Opera House.
The audience laughed as much as it swooned that night -- Loretta was so naturally funny in her delivery of quips and stories between songs. I quote her all the time telling the audience about her eating habits just after she launched her career and went on the road: "Y'all, I used to live on a burger a day."
And I'll never, ever forget the moment in the show where Lynn grew tired of standing. A chair was rolled out for her, and without a word, she plopped down into it, her chiffon gown puffing up towards her ears. And she just kept singin'.
Listen to Loretta's music today. All day. And when you get to "Coal Miner's Daughter," cry. Cry like I do every time I've listened to it in my life. The words are just that authentic and beautiful.
Remembering Loretta Lynn:
Friends and Fellow Artists Pay Tribute to Loretta Lynn
Tanya Tucker Reflects on the Passing of Loretta Lynn