Dolly Parton’s fans include famous faces like Reese Witherspoon, Rebecca Romijn, Billy Ray Cyrus and his daughter Miley, who is also Parton’s goddaughter. Born into extreme poverty on the 19th of January 1946 in Locust Ridge Tennessee, she’s gone on to become a country music institution.
Her music is easy to love, and she’s lived a storied life in the 70+ years she’s been on the planet.
Parton has been very forthcoming about her roots and how much her parents struggled financially. She was the fourth of 12 children and grew up in a one-bedroomed shanty with barely any electricity and no indoor plumbing. When Dolly Rebecca Parton came into the world her father paid the doctor who delivered her with a bag of oatmeal because he didn’t have any money.
Dolly entered a Halloween look-alike contest on Santa Monica Boulevard in Los Angeles. She said she exaggerated her look a little bit before hitting the stage but didn’t even come close to taking first place!
The scientists who created a cloned sheep from an adult mammal cell back in 1996 named it Dolly. It was a tongue-in-cheek nod to two of Parton’s most famous assets since the sheep was derived from a mammary gland cell.
As crazy as it may seem, she’s never actually gone on any of the rides at her Dollywood theme park! She’s frightened of rollercoasters, for one thing, but also suffers from motion sickness, and used to get sick catching the bus to school.
Dolly’s hit song Jolene was apparently inspired by a beautiful bank teller who was showing a little added interest in Carl Dean, Dolly’s longtime husband. Parton revealed the Dean started really enjoying his trips to the bank because he loved the attention he was getting from the pretty woman, and that it eventually became a running joke between the couple.
Dolly’s been married to Carl Dean since all the way back in 1966! As flirtatious as she’s famous for being, she says she’s never met a man who could take her husband’s place. They renewed their vows for their 50th anniversary.
I Will Always Love You is another very well-known Dolly Parton song, and she famously wouldn’t allow Elvis to record it. Colonel Tom Parker was Presley’s talent manager, and he made contact with Dolly to arrange for Presley to cover the song. Part of the agreement, however, would be that Dolly cede 50% of the publishing rights of the song. The savvy businesswoman that she is, however, Parton rejected the offer.
Parton has revealed that she hates all the packing and unpacking that is part and parcel of staying in hotels when she’s on tour, so she turns her bus into a home away from home instead. She says hopping into bed right after a show as they depart for the next one is really convenient.