Born Brenda Gail Webb, singer Crystal Gayle drew attention as much for her nearly floor-length hair as she did for her popular crossover country singles. She and her older sister, country legend Loretta Lynn, had six other sisters and brothers and found escape from their poor upbringing through music.
Inspired by her sister's success, Gayle learned guitar and signed her first recording contract while still in high school, changing her performing name because another Brenda Lee was already prominent in the music industry. Her first single, “I've Cried (The Blue Right Out of My Eyes),” was written for her by her sister and reached No. 23 on the country chart in 1970.
Gayle's first album was 1974's “Crystal Gayle.” Her biggest crossover country-pop hit came in 1977 with “Don't It Make My Brown Eyes Blue" (from her “We Must Believe in Magic” album), topping the country chart and reaching No. 2 on the pop singles chart. The single also won a Grammy for Best Female Country Vocal.
She had three more hit singles from her next album, “When I Dream,” including the chart-topping “Talking in Your Sleep” and “Why Have You Left the One You Left Me For.” When the country hits began to slow, Gayle in the mid-1980s branched out into gospel albums and also released a children's record, 2000's “In My Arms.” She got a star on the Walk of Fame on Oct. 2, 2009.