Loretta Lynn recently performed in Des Moines, Iowa to a sold out crowd of 1,200 fans. Actually, it was more of a family show. Lynn’s twin daughters Peggy and Patsy took the stage before their mother and hawked mom’s cookbook and CD retrospective box set before launching into a couple of their own tasty musical numbers. And Loretta’s son Earnest performed with the grand dame, taking Conway Twitty’s vocals on “Lead Me On” and singing back up on other songs. The two also exchanged country-style banter replete with silly jokes and mother/son repartee that might have seemed more appropriate to younger folks (Lynn is 78 years old and Ernie is in his 50s) about moving back home and such. Plus, they weren’t the only family members to grace the stage. Lynn pulled bandleader Bart Hansen’s father Milton (the family hails from Pierson, Iowa) from the crowd and he covered Hank Thompson’s Squaws Along the Yukon” and Ray Price’s “Pride” to an appreciative audience.
But the show belonged to Lynn, who smiled regally dressed in a white, sequined gown. Her hair showed not a trace of gray, which combined with unwrinkled face and her buxom figure, gave the impression that time had passed her by untouched. This illusion was reinforced by the strength of her vocals, whether she was belting “Fist City” or crooning the emotionally restrained “Dear Uncle Sam”. Here’s Lynn as a much younger woman on “Fist City.”