Dolly Parton, the legendary 77-year-old singer, songwriter, and actress, continues to inspire and impress us with her endless creativity and talent. As we enter the final months of 2023, Dolly is set to release her new book, Behind the Seams: My Life in Rhinestones, on October 17th, followed by her first-ever rock album, Rockstar, on November 17th. It’s truly Dolly Parton season, y’all!
In a recent interview with The Guardian, where she discussed her new book and album, Dolly also opened up about her distinctive fashion style and how she has always remained true to herself, even in the face of disapproval from her own family.
Dolly’s unique fashion sense was inspired by a woman she admired in her hometown, whom she affectionately referred to as the “town tramp.” This woman had a flamboyant style, with her bright red lipstick, long red fingernails, and daring outfits. Dolly was captivated by her beauty and would seek her out during trips to town with her family.
Despite receiving criticism from her father, who worked as a sharecropper, and her grandfather, a preacher, for her unconventional attire, Dolly never allowed their disapproval to deter her. She proudly embraced her individuality and expressed herself through her fashion choices, remaining true to who she was.
“I was willing to pay for it. I’m very sensitive, I didn’t like being disciplined – it hurt my feelings so bad to be scolded or whipped or whatever. But sometimes there’s just that part of you that’s willing, if you want something bad enough, to go for it,” she revealed to The Guardian. Dolly wanted it bad enough, and she went for it.
Not only did her family have concerns about her style, but even record label executives tried to persuade her to tone it down. However, Dolly remained steadfast in expressing herself authentically. Although she acknowledges that she cares about what people think of her, she never allowed it to compromise her true self.
Dolly lives by the advice her mother always gave her: “to thine own self be true.” She believes in the strength that comes from staying true to her own understanding and beliefs, whether it’s in her personality, conduct, or business ventures.
Dolly Parton Attributes Her Success to Her Remarkable Parents
Dolly Parton’s remarkable success as a recording artist spanning 67 years can be attributed, in large part, to her upbringing and the influence of her parents. She believes that she inherited the best qualities from both of them, shaping her into the businesswoman and artist she is today.
“I like to think that I got the best of my dad and my mom. It’s kept me as a businesswoman, knowing what I need to do, not just to get out and sing,” Dolly shared, emphasizing the significant impact her parents had on her career. Their influence helped her build an empire worth more than $500 million and create a catalog of over 3,000 songs.
Songwriting is a passion that Dolly has embraced since she was just 7 years old. Even though she has retired from touring, she continues to write songs to this day. Whenever an idea strikes her, she ensures that she captures it immediately by writing it down on whatever is available, whether it’s gum wrappers or restaurant napkins. Dolly knows that great ideas can easily slip away if not recorded promptly.