Loretta Lynn: Marriage Secrets Inspired Her Music

Reigning queen of country is now helping the next generation of singers find their sound.
3:00 | 12/05/12

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Transcript for Loretta Lynn: Marriage Secrets Inspired Her Music
She just celebrated 50 years of performing at the famed grand of opry. And country legend loretta lynn is still inspiring a new generation, thanks to a collaboration with rocker jack white. The coal miner's daughter is now reaching a hip audience with songs like "portland, oregon." In fact, the only thing more timeless in her music may be the wisdom she dished out to abc's sharyn alfonsi when they went "on the town." ♪ Well portland, oregon ♪ ♪ if that you ain't love ♪ Reporter: She's had 52 hits, 60 number one songs. At 80 years old, loretta lynn is country royalty. ♪ I lost my mind in oregon ♪ Reporter: And she is still on the road. What is it that you like about performing still? I mean, couldn't you just -- if I couldn't sing, i wouldn't go. Reporter: Don't let the frilly gowns fool you. Loretta lynn is every bit the rebel. Pushing the boundaries of country for decades, writing rated x about the double standards women faced. ♪ You can't have a male friend ♪ ♪ when you're a has been ♪ ♪ or a woman you're rated x ♪ Reporter: And writing "the pill" about birth control. ♪ Making up for all those years ♪ ♪ yes I've got the pill ♪ Reporter: You wrote about the pill. You wrote about war. People said you're a feminist. Are you a feminist? I think so a certain point. I wrote them because that was what was on my mind at the time. Reporter: When she released those songs, country music stations refused to play them. But loretta pushed forward to become the first lady of country music. We visited her at her tennessee compound to discuss that journey. This was my first furniture that I bought. I thought maybe we hit the jackpot. Reporter: A massive estate with its own museum, post office, waterfall and gift shop. A long way from her humble beginnings in butcher hollow, kentucky, one of eight children. Do you remember the moment when you realized you could sing? You ain't going to believe this, but me and my little first cousin sang all the time and when we were little, daddy would come out on the porch and tell us to shut our big mouths. People all over the holler can hear you. I'd say, daddy, who cares? They're all our accuse sins. Reporter: Those early years inspiring the academy award winning film "coal miner's daughter." ♪ I was born a coal miner's daughter ♪ Reporter: At age 15, she married. At 16, she had her first of six children. Her husband, nicknamed dew, the man she called the love of her life. I do just what I want. Don't you hit me. Reporter: You know, he was violent, he was drinking. He was cheating on you. He did that when he got to drinking. I could whip him. If he hit me once, I hit him twice. He knew it, too. Reporter: But after 50 years of this, why didn't you just divorce him? I loved him. Reporter: And he inspired her. Saving up to buy loretta her first guitar. And his antics became fodder for songs like "you ain't woman enough." ♪ You ain't woman enough ♪ ♪ to take my man ♪ Reporter: Have you ever had punch a woman? Uh-huh. Reporter: And? There's one I'd like to punch more than just punch. Reporter: Still, to this day? Still, to this day. I get mad when I think about her. Let's get off the subject. Reporter: It's that honesty that drew jack white to loretta. He produced her most recent alb album. ♪ It was much too late for the both of us in oregon ♪ Reporter: The album would top the country charts and alternative charts, as well. Giving loretta two grammies. And the grammy goes to -- loretta lynn. Reporter: And now, at 80 years old, loretta lynn, a great grandmother finds herself getting back on the tour bus. This is my bed. I have everything in here i need. And I've got my gowns hanging in here. Reporter: There are gowns in the shower. I take them, pull threat in there. I sing every night. Reporter: Every night? Every night that I'm on the road, yeah. Reporter: And this coal miner's daughter turned music legend isn't going home any time soon. ♪ Not much left ♪ ♪ nothing lives here anymore ♪ ♪ except the memories of a coal miner's daughter ♪ Reporter: For "nightline," I'm sharyn alfonsi in hurricane mills, tennessee. Ah, 80 years young. Loretta's book is in stores now. And her tour launches early next year. Our thanks to sharyn alfonsi.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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