Today, Billboard announced that Kentucky country music legend, Loretta Lynn, will be the recipient of the first-ever Women in Music Legend Award. The award honors Loretta Lynn’s historic contributions to the industry and artistry of American music. The honor will be presented at Billboard’s 2015 Women in Music event on Dec. 11 in New York City. The event will air on Dec. 18 on Lifetime. It is held alongside Billboard’s Women in Music list, which names the year’s 50 most powerful female executives in the industry.
Loretta Lynn has had a long history in music ever since she was raised in the Appalachian Mountains of eastern Kentucky, to when she and her husband, Mooney, moved out west. She has 29 top 10 albums on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart, in which 11 hit number one.
In 2004, Loretta Lynn saw resurgence in her career to expand beyond country music boundaries with “Van Lear Rose,” the album produced by Jack White. It would hit number 3 on the all-genre Billboard 200.
On the Hot Country Charts, Lynn hit number 1 with sixteen songs, including “Don’t Come Home A’Drinkin’ (With Lovin’ on Your Mind),” “She’s Got You,” “After the Fire Is Gone,” “Coal Miner’s Daughter” and more.
“From the moment she broke through more than five decades ago, Loretta Lynn has been an unstoppable musical force who writes and performs with a breathtaking fearlessness and honesty,” said Janice Min, co-president and chief creative officer of Guggenheim Media’s Entertainment Group, which consists of Billboard and The Hollywood Reporter. “As a musical pioneer, author, and inspiration to everyone from Jack White to Miranda Lambert, Loretta Lynn has pushed every boundary in music and is the definition of a legend. We are honored to present this award to her.”
Never one to stop, Loretta Lynn continues to perform across the United States each year. On March 4, 2016, she is set to release her newest album, “Full Circle.” Produced by Patsy Lynn Russell and John Carter Cash, and recorded at the Cash Cabin Studio in Hendersonville, Tennessee, “Full Circle” takes listeners on a journey through Loretta’s musical story, from the Appalachian folk songs and gospel music she learned as a child, to new interpretations of her classic hits and country standards, to songs newly-written for the project. Drawing inspiration from personal memories and deep connections to American music, Lynn’s 13 new recordings capture the essence of these songs in intimate new performances.
Fans will also have an opportunity to watch a new documentary about Loretta’s remarkable life and career when “American Masters — Loretta Lynn: Still a Mountain Girl” premieres nationwide Friday, March 4, 2016, 9:00-11:00 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). The film will explore the country legend’s hard-fought road to stardom. From her Appalachian roots to the Oscar-winning biopic of her life, “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” Lynn struggled to balance family and her music career and is still going strong over 50 years later. Loretta Lynn has long been established as the undisputed Queen of Country Music, with more than 50 years of recording and touring to her name. A self-taught guitarist and songwriter, Lynn was one of the most distinctive performers in Nashville in the 1960s and 1970s. She shook up Nashville by writing her own songs, many of which tackled boundary-pushing topics drawn from her own life experiences as a wife and mother.
Jessica Blankenship is the owner and founder of Kentucky Country Music website. The Berea College graduate has been a music journalist and historian for over 20 years. She enjoys providing concert photography, reviews, historical articles, red carpet event coverage, and exclusive interviews of your favorite musicians. Jessica is proud to be a Kentucky Colonel and alumni of the FFA and 4-H Clubs. In 2018, she was named one of Laurel County’s Ten Under 40 Award Recipients. In 2019, she was a member of the Inaugural class of BRIGHT Kentucky as part of Leadership Kentucky. She has been featured on the Kentucky Music Preview podcast, Hollercast podcast, Overtones radio show, WFKY Nashville News Roundup, KET, and more. Beyond music, she enjoys traveling, helping her community, collecting gnomes, and Volkswagens.