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On Sept. 25, 1962, Loretta Lynn became a member of the Grand Ole Opry. The influential country songstress celebrated that milestone Tuesday night with a 50th anniversary celebration back where it all began: inside the Opry’s hallowed wooden circle.
Loretta’s sister Crystal Gayle, Lee Ann Womack and Miranda Lambert and the Pistol Annies (making their Opry debut) were all on hand to perform some of the Country Music Hall of Famer’s most influential songs. Crystal turned in a rambunctious version of “Don’t Come Home A’Drinkin’ (With Lovin’ on Your Mind),” Miranda channeled her inner Loretta for a feisty “I'm a Honky Tonk Girl,” and the Annies—who said they regard their hero as the “Alpha and Omega Annie”—roared through “Fist City,” a staple of their regular live show.
But the night belonged to the guest of honor, who sang “You Ain’t Woman Enough (To Take My Man)” with defiant vigor and nearly made Trace Adkins blush during their duet of “Lead Me On.” “That made my career right there,” Trace said, before ceding the stage to Loretta, Crystal, Lee Ann, Miranda, Ashley Monroe and Angaleena Presley for an all-star, all-woman rendition of “Coal Miner’s Daughter” that brought the at-capacity Opry House to its feet.
Look for more on Loretta’s Opry milestone in an upcoming issue of Country Weekly.