Loretta Lynn isn't related to Dolly Parton but her real sister is also a country star

Eve Edwards October 5, 2022
Loretta Lynn isn't related to Dolly Parton but her real sister is also a country star
Photo by Ron Davis/Getty Images

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As country music stars across the States pay tribute to the late Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton’s comment that they were “like sisters” has some wondering whether the two singers were actually related.

Loretta Lynn, known for her hits “Don’t Come Home a Drinkin'” and “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” died at the age of 90 this Tuesday, October 4, 2022.

“Our precious mom, Loretta Lynn, passed away peacefully this morning, Oct. 4, in her sleep at home at her beloved ranch in Hurricane Mills,” the family statement to WKRN reportedly said.

In light of Dolly Parton’s tribute to the late Loretta, let’s take a look at the relationship the two singers fostered over the years.

Photo by Beth Gwinn/Redferns

On Tuesday, October 4, shortly after news of Loretta Lynn’s passing broke, Dolly Parton released a short, heartfelt statement to Instagram.

“So sorry to hear about my sister, friend Loretta,” the statement opens.

It continues: “We’ve been like sisters all the years we’ve been in Nashville and she was a wonderful human being, wonderful talent, had millions of fans and I’m one of them. I miss her dearly as we all will. May she rest in peace.”

Although Dolly was a sister in spirit, Loretta Lynn did have many siblings of her own. And some of them even fostered their own musical careers.

Loretta’s younger brother Willie Lynn dipped his toe in the musical world with his 1967 track “I Come Home A-Drinkin’ (To a Worn-Out Wife Like You).” Willie released this as an “answer song” to Loretta’s number one hit released earlier that year, “Don’t Come Home A Drinkin’.” He also served as part of Loretta’s touring band for a while, as reported by All Music.

Loretta Lynn’s younger sisters also found musical success. Peggy Sue (born 1943) found brief success in the late 1960s as a country singer. However, this was eclipsed by the success of the youngest, Brenda Lynn (born 1951). Brenda is better known by her stage name Crystal Gayle. Crystal is best known for her 1977 hit “Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue.”

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Loretta Lynn and Dolly Parton collaborated together on an album

Friends for decades and musical collaborators on numerous occasions, it’s no surprise that Dolly Parton considered Loretta Lynn like a sister.

In November 1993, they released, alongside Tammy Wynette, an album titled Honky Tonk Angels. The country trio feature in 12 songs from the album, of which Parton wrote two, Lynn wrote one, as did Wynette.

Loretta Lynn shares throwback with Dolly just days before her death

Just a few days before her passing, Loretta Lynn took a trip down memory lane, reminiscing on a musical highlight of her’s and Dolly’s friendship.

Dolly Parton’s variety show on ABC produced some iconic moments in country music history, despite only being on air for one season (it aired from 1987-88).

Lynn revisited her appearance on Dolly (1988), which saw the two join forces for a medley of Lynn’s biggest hits, singing in epic harmony. On September 29, 2022, Lynn shared a clip from the show to Twitter, captioning the post: “It’s been fun watching this throwback making the rounds right now. Dolly Parton and I always have a great time together!”

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Eve spends her days writing about everything culture-related. From celebrity news to music, film and television, Eve covers all bases. When she’s not writing you can find her making music or mastering the art of homemade pasta.