By Lorie Hollabaugh – The Boot
Loretta Lynn weighed in on the current state of country music in the new preface of her recently reissued biography, ‘Coal Miner’s Daughter,’ stating that some of country’s new crop aren’t exactly country and should really stick to pop music. But there are a few among the newer generation of country stars to whom the 76-year-old icon gives a hearty thumbs-up — and one of them better watch her future husband!
“I like Miranda Lambert and her boyfriend Blake Shelton,” Loretta tells the Philadelphia Inquirer. “I kissed him on the cheek and she said, ‘You’re trying to take him away from me,’ and I said, ‘He’s my boyfriend now!'”
(Though it’s all in good fun, Loretta knows a thing or two about country music cat-fights!)
“And I love Darius Rucker,” Loretta continues. “Now that’s country. Also, Garth Brooks is coming back. That little booger is one of the greatest entertainers you’ll ever see.”
Though Loretta writes in the preface of the book that “some of these new country singers aren’t really country … I think some of them should be singing pop music and leave country alone,” she realizes that you can’t stop progress or evolution, especially in as mercurial a business as the music industry.
“Country music has changed a lot; let’s just say it that way,” Loretta notes. “It’s really not the country I knew when I started singing. But it’s the country today. Either accept it or forget it.”
Now in her sixth decade in the business, Loretta continues to push ahead, touring and making new music, and says she’ll definitely work on another album with rocker Jack White, who produced her Grammy-winning ‘Van Lear Rose.’ He’s another artist who earns kudos from the country icon.
“Jack’s a good boy,” says Loretta fondly. “He’s not country music. But I think he’s a little more country now than he ever thought he would be, since he worked with me.”
As far as career accomplishments, Loretta says her greatest achievement is probably just the fact that she’s remained steadfast in an industry that encourages and embraces constant change.
“I’m the most proud of the fact that I’ve stayed the way I started out,” she proclaims. “I’m proud that I didn’t change. When I go into a town that people first started loving me, and first started talking about me, I still got those people. Some passed away. But most are still there. And they come to see me every time I go. And that’s good.”
Loretta recently postponed a number of concert dates to recuperate from knee surgery.