Movie News & Reviews

LexGo Totally Awesome '80s Film Festival: Readers' favorite Loretta Lynn songs

Singer Loretta Lynn wrote many of the songs that are among her fans' favorites.
Singer Loretta Lynn wrote many of the songs that are among her fans' favorites. Associated Press

The LexGo Totally Awesome '80s Film Festival continues Wednesday with a Kentucky favorite, Coal Miner's Daughter (1980).

This much-lauded movie is the rags-to-riches biography of Loretta Lynn, who was born into poverty in Butcher Hollow, Ky., and went on to become one of country music's most successful and revered performers. Directed by Englishman Michael Apted, it stars Sissy Spacek as Lynn and Tommy Lee Jones as her husband, Doo. Spacek won the Oscar for best actress, and the movie was nominated for six others, including best picture.

We asked readers: What's your favorite Loretta Lynn song or lyric, and why?

We were overwhelmed with responses. Here is a selection:

■ Love all her stuff, but I like Don't Come Home a-Drinkin' (With Lovin' on Your Mind) and You Ain't Woman Enough to Take My Man (not the same man who did the drinkin'). — Becki Owens, Lexington

■ With thousands of songs recorded during a career spanning over 50 years, it's hard to choose just one favorite so I've picked two that I've loved for years: I Wanna Be Free: penned by Loretta. It's uptempo, and I've always loved the melody and phrasing. It's a happy-feel-good song. They Don't Make 'em Like My Daddy Anymore: I love the words and that it honors her dad and his work ethic and shows admiration to him. — Allen Branscum, Somerset

■ Around '98 or '99, I was living in East Nashville. I was signed as a staff songwriter to Sony/Tree publishing company. Peggy Lynn, one of Loretta's twin daughters, was signed to the same company. Peggy and I became dear friends during this time.

I guess Peggy told her mom that I was a Vietnam veteran because one Veterans Day my phone rang. I answered it. A voice said, "Hello, honey. This is Loretta. Peggy told me that you are a Vietnam veteran."

At that time, I had never met Loretta. I have been a songwriter most of my life, and to be getting a call from the greatest female country singer-songwriter that ever lived sort of took me off-guard to say the least.

I'm not sure what I said, probably something like, "Loretta, really?"

Loretta said, "Well, this is my gift for you this Veterans Day," and she sang to me over the phone one of her songs, Dear Uncle Sam . She went on about how thankful she was for us vets.

I couldn't believe it. I was about 4 feet off the ground. It was one of the highlights of my musical life and a testimony how great and how caring and real Loretta Lynn is.

Peggy and I went from being dear friends to falling in love and getting married. We now have a 10-year-old son and a small organic farm in Goodlettsville, Tenn., called Madison Creek Farms. Not only is Loretta a great singer songwriter, she also is a great mother-in-law. — Mark Marchetti, Goodlettsville, Tenn.

One's on the Way is my favorite. — Jenny Patrick, Clay City

■ My favorite Loretta song is You Ain't Woman Enough to Take My Man. It's such a feisty, upbeat song. — Tammy Pickett, Jamestown

■ My favorite Loretta Lynn song is Coal Miner's Daughter. Loretta was a poet. She spoke for many Eastern Kentucky women who put God first and then family. — Sherry Butler, Beattyville

■ I will put in a vote for the song You Ain't Woman Enough to Take My Man, which she wrote. A good line from it is, "Sometimes a man's caught looking/ at things that he don't need." — Diane Arnson Svarlien, Lexington

■ My favorite Loretta Lynn song is This Haunted House. I discovered this song in the late '80s, when I borrowed an LP from the library. Later, as I discovered Patsy Cline, I thought it was cool that it was written about the late Patsy Cline's husband, Charlie Dick. She was over at Patsy and Charlie's house in 1964 or so, and I got to thinking about what Charlie was going through with Patsy gone so tragically.

It's really clever how Loretta took the song about a person mourning and turned into a song about a lost love that has left. — Jimmy Walker, Lexington

■ My all-time favorite song by Loretta Lynn is Coal Miner's Daughter. It exemplifies her skills as a songwriter and a singer. I saw her in concert last year at the Paramount Theater in Ashland and have tickets to her concert scheduled in late April. She proves that we "old folks" can continue to contribute and have an impact on today's world. — Larry N. Miller, Ashland

■ My favorite song and lyric is Coal Miner's Daughter. The lyrics are close to my biography. — Emma Dalton, Lexington

■ Their are so many Loretta songs I love. But You're Lookin' at Country is my favorite one. It's a little bit about her life and mine, too. We live in North Carolina in the country, and I cannot stand the city life at all. Love the country and that good ol' country ham. I'm 15 and love Loretta so much. She is the very best. — Jerry Jackson, Salisbury, N.C.

Read more about Coal Miner's Daughter and its place in pop culture on Sunday at and in print in the Living Sunday section.


LexGo Totally Awesome '80s Film Festival

When: 7:15 p.m. Wednesdays through March 27

Where: Kentucky Theatre, 214 E. Main St. Free parking in Transit Center garage; enter on High Street across from the post office or Calvary Baptist Church.

Tickets: $6; available in advance at Kentucky Theatre box office and at

Learn more: (859) 231-7924


March 6: Coal Miner's Daughter

March 13: Ferris Bueller's Day Off

March 20: Risky Business

March 27: The Breakfast Club


Talk about The Goonies and the other movies in the LexGo Totally Awesome '80s Film Festival on Twitter with the hashtag #totallyawesome80s.

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