Dolly Parton: America’s Legendary Country Star


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Popular country singer and film actress Dolly Parton made the American dream come true. Growing up in an extremely poor family, from the age of ten, the malnourished and sleep-deprived artist took vocal lessons with her last money, which eventually more than paid for themselves. In this post, we will find out more about Dolly Parton. Let’s get started.

Dolly Parton: All You Need To Know

When was Dolly Parton born?

Dolly Rebecca Parton was born on January 19, 1946, in Tennessee, in a house on the banks of the Little Pigeon River. Dolly was the fourth of twelve children (her sister Stella also became a singer) in a family of low income. Father Robert Lee Parton farmed first on rented land and then on his tobacco farm. Evie Lee’s mother, a housewife, came from a family of Pentecostal church pastors; she had musical talent and often sang ballads and folk songs to her children. The future singer and her brothers and sisters regularly attended services.

How did Dolly Parton start her music career?

From the age of 6, Dolly sang in the church choir, and a year later she began learning to play the guitar. The girl performed on local television and radio programs.

In 1959, the young talent won the main prize at the Tennessee Emerging Vocalists’ Competition, and in the same year her first single, Puppy Love, appeared.

The early days

After receiving her high school diploma in 1964, Dolly Parton moved to Nashville, where she wrote compositions for popular country musicians, often co-writing with her uncle Bill Owens. In 1965, Dolly Parton signed a contract with Monument Records. The artist recorded her first singles as a pop singer, but the very next year country compositions appeared, which were successful and became the basis for the debut album of the vocalist Hello I’m Dolly.

Rise in popularity

In her youth, Parton sang in a duet with Porter Wagoner for several years. This unexpected union became golden for Dolly – in 1968, the Country Music Association recognized them as the vocal group of the year. The tracks Just Someone I Used To Know, Daddy Was An Old Time Preacher Man paved the way for Parton to Hollywood.

Solo work and Jolene

Dolly also recorded solo compositions, but they were not as successful. It was only in 1971 that she attracted everyone’s attention with the album Coat Of Many Colors, which is still considered a milestone in the history of country music. Three years later, the singer wrote and released the single Jolene (Dolly’s best song, according to Rolling Stone magazine) – the track even hit the UK charts. The singer decided to continue her solo career and broke off cooperation with Wagoner, about which she even wrote the song I Will Always Love You.

Biggest star in America

Over the next few years, Parton was the most sought-after performer in the world of country music, but she dreamed of more. In 1977, the album Here You Come Again was released, bringing the singer her first million-selling album and a Grammy Award for Best Female Country Vocal Performance. Parton collaborated with Kenny Rogers on the song Islands In The Stream, which topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart for two weeks in 1983.

In 1987, the performer signed a contract with the new Columbia Records label and released the album Trio, recorded with country divas Emmylou Harris and Linda Ronstadt, in 1993 she delighted fans with another collaboration, this time with Loretta Lynn and Tammy Wynette. The artist participated in the recording of the song When You Tell Me That You Love Me from Julio Iglesias’s album Ma Vie: Mes Plus Grands Succes (1998).

In 1999 and 2002, new Dolly Parton albums hit the shelves of record stores, for each of which Parton received a Grammy. In 2005, the vocalist was awarded the US National Medal of the Arts.

Dolly Records

The first single from the singer’s own record company, Dolly Records, was Better Get To Livin’ (2007), and a year later the studio album Backwoods Barbie was released. This and Parton’s subsequent discs have been on the Billboard 200 more than once.

Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame Induction

In 2020, the performer’s discography was supplemented by the 47th solo and 3rd Christmas album, Holly Dolly Christmas, where the artist acted as executive producer. Two years later, Dolly was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame along with Duran Duran, Eminem, Carly Simon, and others. The singer released the disc Run, Rose, Run (2022), but in an interview, she stated that she would no longer tour and would limit herself to individual live performances.

Dolly Parton: Movie Career

Her musical career did not stop the singer from acting in films. In 1980, the comedy “Nine to Five” premiered, starring Dolly, Jane Fonda, and Lily Tomlin. The humorous song “9 to 5,” written by the artist for this film, became an informal anthem for office workers, was nominated for an Oscar, and after the premiere of the film, it occupied the first line in the American charts for a couple of weeks.

“The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas” became the highest-grossing musical film of 1982. The film itself and the lead actress Dolly received nominations for the Golden Globe Award. For the musical, the singer re-recorded the song I Will Always Love You.

Oscar nomination

In 2005, Parton received an Oscar nomination for the song Travelin’ Thru from the comedy-drama Transamerica. In the same year, the artist appeared in a cameo in the comedy Miss Congeniality 2: Beautiful and Dangerous.

In 2019, Netflix launched the series “Dolly Parton’s Heartstrings,” based on stories from Parton’s most beloved songs. The artist herself appeared in several episodes of the 8-episode project, in which she acted as an executive producer.

In the musical Christmas on the Square (2020), Dolly was included in the main cast along with Christine Baranski, Jennifer Lewis, and Treat Williams.

Who is Dolly Parton married to?

In May 1966, Dolly Parton settled into her personal life by marrying Carl Thomas Dean, whom she had previously dated for two years. It is known that the artist’s chosen one had nothing to do with show business and worked in the road service.

The husband always avoided the attention of the paparazzi and accompanied his wife to social events only once. As a childless couple, the couple raised the singer’s younger siblings in their Nashville home, whom Parton reportedly called her “Aunt Grandma.”

What did Dolly Parton say about Miley Cyrus?

In 2014, Dolly commented on the dramatic changes in the image of her goddaughter, singer Miley Cyrus. Then, in a conversation with media representatives, the performer said that the public needs to pay attention to Miley’s talent, and not to her shocking behavior. Despite the articles that were published at that time in all publications about show business, Parton was convinced that there was no reason for concern since the changes only benefited the darling of young people.


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