Loretta Lynn shows the fight still in her
Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, Cerritos, Cal. Sept. 6, 2000
By Dan MacIntosh
CERRITOS, CA As a woman who recorded country music's best ever chick fight song, "Fist City," Loretta Lynn still has a lot of fight left in her, because she sure had a feisty spirit from the moment she took the stage.
A female Las Vegas audience member once questioned the marital determination of her "You Ain't Woman Enough To Take My Man," which prompted Lynn to pick up her dress and begin walking on tabletops to get at the heckler, before somebody finally stopped her. Hearing her recall this incident from the ornate Cerritos stage, you'd best believe she was more than just talk, too.
Although nothing brought her even close to blows during this hour-long hour show, Lynn still displayed all the spunk and vigor of a feather weight golden glove contender. While she paid plenty of attention to her singing, which grew stronger and clearer as she went along, you just never knew what she might say between songs.
Her stories ranged from describing how she froze her butt off last week at a show in Wisconsin to how she still had her own tonsils. She even admitted she really wouldn't mind breast feeding her grandson, if she still could. Just how such a loose tongue ever survived in Nashville all these years is one of the unexplained mysteries of life.
Of course, it's this same honesty that makes her songs hit home with so many. She did most of all the big ones this night, including the autobiographical "Coal Miner's Daughter," the still controversial "The Pill" and the rowdy "Don't Come Home A-Drinkin' (With Lovin' On Your Mind)."
It would have been easy for Lynn to just stick with such country classics, but she also made room for a few new songs. These included two songs from ther brand new "Still Woman Enough" recording.
One was the banjo-flavored spiritual "God's Country," and the second was her new single "Country In My Genes," which with its attack on the sorry state of modern country music reads like a witness to the trial of the murder on Music Row.
Before closing with the predictable "Coal Miner's Daughter," Lynn belted out an a cappella "How Great Thou Art," which showed off her still strong vocal chords. While she's no spring chicken any more, Lynn still has the desire and the tools to get the job done. That coal miner raised him one hard working girl.
There was no opening act on this date, but Lynn did hand over the stage to her two daughters, The Lynns, who sang their hit "Woman To Woman" as well as a moving new ballad called "Sara," a love song to a daughter born out of wedlock. Come to think of it, this song sounded a lot like something their mom might have written. Chips off the old block apparently.