[Loretta Lynn’s Ranch
Hurricane Mills, Tenn.] It wasn’t a easy life, but you didn’t know that. Everybody lived that way. I remember Daddy coming home in his hardshell cap. All you could see was the whites of his eyes. [Loretta Lynn, Recording Artist]
He’d have coal dust all over him. I learned from it, you know? After I left there, I found out there was another life that wasn’t quite as hard as Butcher Holler. I knew whatever I did, I had to put my whole life, my soul, everything into whatever I was doing or I’d never make it. And I had a family to feed. But I couldn’t take them with me, you know? I just had one bus at that time. That was hard for me, too, to take care of the babies and sing on the road. That was the hardest time of my life. I always knew I was a coal miner’s daughter, you know, growing up, but I never was called that till I wrote the song. We was doing “The Wilburn Brothers Show.” Everybody broke for dinner. I went to the dressing room. I went back there and took my guitar and I just sat down and I strummed that: “Well, I was born a coal miner’s daughter.” And I didn’t really mean to write about it. I thought: You know, that could be a good song. And that’s how I wrote it. There’s four more verses. I had all of them ready to sing, you know, and I was singing through them and Owen Bradley come out and said, “Loretta, there’s already been one ‘El Paso.’ There is not gonna ever be another one.” So I left them there that night at the recording studio. And I’ve never seen them since. But one day I’ll put four more verses on it and recut it. [Coal Miner’s Daughter
1980, Universal Studios] I thought it was a good movie. I thought Sissy done good. She liked to kill me, though, that year because I was working under road, like, three and four nights a week and she was on the road with me for almost a year just off and on, you know. And I would be learning her the songs. I’d get in from work real late and work with her. And after 4 in the morning I’d say, “Sissy, I’m going to bed.” But she done a great job. At one time I worried that people thought that I wasn’t a good person — because I was a coal miner’s daughter, they’d think I was poor. And I was really poor. But not after I wrote “Coal Miner’s Daughter” I wasn’t. Everybody started calling me the coal miner’s daughter. They didn’t call me “You Ain’t Woman Enough to Take My Man” or “Fist City.” They don’t have to remember my name. When they see me it’s, “Hey, Coal Miner’s Daughter.” And I’ll turn around and say, “Yeah.” That’s all I go by now. I lived it. And I made it. And I wouldn’t trade not one year that I existed in Butcher Holler. I wouldn’t trade it for nothin’. ♫♪ When I was a child I cried ♪♫ [AARP® Real Possibilities] [Select Photos and Music Courtesy: Getty Images, Corbis Images, Decca Records, Legacy Recordings]