My Kind of Country

Country music from a fan's point of view since 2008

Single Review: Loretta Lynn – ‘Rated X’

A country song discussing the double standards of sexuality in gender roles wouldn’t be a novel concept today, but it sure was in 1972.  Coming on the back of the Feminist and Civil Right movements of the mid to late 60s, many of Loretta Lynn’s lyrics were anthems of empowerment for the modern women of the time.  Perhaps none were more direct in their questioning of the status quo than the self-penned ‘Rated X’.

Released as the only single from her 1973 album, Entertainer of the Year, sent out after Loretta became the first woman to ever win the CMA’s coveted trophy, ‘Rated X’ would find itself banned by a handful of country stations.  But like many of Lynn’s earlier banned hits, the controversy only helped to propel the song up the charts all the way to the top, and the talk even sold a few records.

A snappy steel guitar lick opens the song as Loretta launches into her sermon on a woman’s treatment in society.  Here, she’s speaking of divorced women.  The general public thinks of her as an easy woman; just because she’s loved before she must be ready for more.  Loretta’s spit fire delivery tells her disdain for the system as she sings:

And if you’re rated X you’re some kind of goal even men turning silver try to make
But I think it’s wrong to judge every picture if a cheap camera makes a mistake

Whether she knows it or not, today’s modern woman owes a great debt of gratitude to Loretta Lynn and her trailblazing efforts.

Grade: A-

‘Rated X’ is available as a digital download from amazon and other retailers.

One response to “Single Review: Loretta Lynn – ‘Rated X’

  1. Paul W Dennis April 17, 2010 at 9:16 am

    Loretta was unique – wish there were more like her, but there can’t be as God broke that particular mold long ago. Loretta is the most important female singer in the history of the genre

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