For her first album in more than 10 years, Loretta Lynn is going back to the basics while still keeping her one-of-a-kind sound. The new project, Full Circle, was produced by her daughter, Patsy Lynn Russell, and John Carter Cash and is the follow-up to her 2004 Grammy-winning Van Lear Rose.
“There’s nobody like her,” Cash said. “Loretta is real. What you see is what you get.”
The Country Music Hall of Fame member concedes that songwriting has always come easy for her even at the start of her career.
“I just started writing,” Lynn told CMT Hot 20 Countdown’s Katie Cook. “And where I lived was 3,000 miles away from country music. And I just started writing. Nobody told me I couldn’t do it, and nobody told me it was good when I started writing, but I just kept on.”
The album’s March 4 release date coincides with a new PBS documentary, American Masters – Loretta Lynn: Still a Mountain Girl, which chronicles her life.
“Yeah, I think we sound better. The girls … we all sound alike, you know, and we get in a room by ourselves, we start looking alike — and that’s bad,” she laughed.
She returns to the road in March for a tour that includes early stops in Bossier City, Louisiana, and at the South by Southwest Music Festival in Austin. She has additional dates scheduled through the end of October.
“I’ll ask the public what they want to hear,” Lynn says of her live performances. “A lot times, they’ll ask for a song I sang when I first started, and I won’t remember it. But I’ll just tell them, ’I don’t remember that.'”
With a devoted fan base, she welcomes a little audience participation during her shows.
“They sing along with me every night,” she says of the fans. “The front row sings just as loud as I am.”
For much more on Loretta Lynn tune into CMT Hot 20 Countdown this Saturday and Sunday (Feb. 27-28) at 9 a.m. ET/PT.