Loretta Lynn, one of country music’s most unique talents, was added last night to the Songwriters Hall of Fame in New York, where she’s enshrined alongside such disparate talents as traditional pop legend Cole Porter, rock great Bob Dylan, pop composer Burt Bacharach and Motown icon Smokey Robinson.
“In New York — are you ready for that?” Loretta told The Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “If it’d been Nashville, I wouldn’t have been so shocked.”
Of course, she’s already enshrined in the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, which inducted her in 1982. Her peers in that hall include Willie Nelson, Hank Williams, Merle Haggard and Dolly Parton. The songwriting recognition is particularly rewarding for Loretta, who authored her hits “The Pill,” “Coal Miner’s Daughter” and “Don’t Come Home A’Drinkin’ (With Lovin’ On Your Mind).”
“I’d rather write songs than sing,” she insisted.
Not that she’s giving up singing by any means. In fact, she’s planning to re-record some of her early hits — including “You Ain’t Woman Enough,” “Fist City” and “You’re Lookin’ At Country” — and she’s planning to record with sisters Crystal Gayle and Peggy Sue.
In the meantime, Loretta’s partners in the limelight at the New York induction ceremony included songwriters from several other genres: rock composer Desmond Child (known for Aerosmith’s “Dude Looks Like A Lady” and Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ On A Prayer”), pop writer Albert Hammond (“To All The Girls I’ve Loved Before,” “It Never Rains In Southern California”) and Broadway/movie tunesmith Alan Menken (“A Whole New World,” “Beauty And The Beast”).
Full biographies and a complete list of inductees are available at the Songwriters Hall of Fame’s Virtual Museum at songhall.org.