Thirty-two years ago today, Loretta Lynn took the stage at the Presidential Inauguration Gala. She was joined by Crystal Gale and others to sing a medley of hits in honor of President Bush.
Lynn kicked off their performance with a verse from her iconic hit song, “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” before passing the torch to Crystal Gayle. Gayle performed a verse from her Grammy-winning hit song “Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue.”
The finale of the performance was a special rendition of “Stand By Your Man,” sung by all four performers. They changed the lyrics to “Stand by our man” to pay tribute to the president.
It seemed appropriate that Loretta Lynn and other country stars were there to celebrate Bush’s swearing-in. Bush was a Texan with a long-standing love for country music.
This Was Not Loretta Lynn’s First or Last Inauguration Performance
Loretta Lynn is no stranger to presidential inauguration events. In fact, she was the first solo female country artist to perform at the White House. She was first invited to perform by President Richard Nixon. She has since sung for several presidents over the years.
Loretta Lynn has performed for both Bush presidents, Nixon, and Reagan. Though, the best of her inauguration performances was for President Jimmy Carter back in 1977. In that show, she highlighted both her talent and sense of humor.
In 1977, she performed at President Jimmy Carter’s inauguration event. Jean Stapleton of “All in the Family” introduced Lynn by saying, “I can’t think of a more appropriate way to celebrate the presidential inauguration of a peanut farmer from south Georgia than with the artistry of the queen of country music, Miss Loretta Lynn.”
After performing “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” Lynn took a moment to say a few words. First, she expressed her gratitude for performing for the president. Then, she said that she hoped that people would stop making fun of the way she talked because the president talks the same way. She added, jokingly, “I’d like to say, also, he’s the only president we’ve had that don’t talk with an accent.”
After all those years of honoring presidents, one honored Loretta Lynn. In 2013, Barak Obama presented Lynn and several other Americans with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. The medal is the highest award available to civilians in the United States. Lynn received the award for her contribution to American culture through her vast musical catalog.