Jan. 31: UPDATE: Dolly Earns Second Oscar Nod As was expected by nearly all critics, Dolly's name was among those announced Tuesday morning for the 78th Annual Academy Awards. She received her second career Oscar nomination, both of which were in the category of Best Achievement in Music, Original Song. This nomination comes for the tune "Travelin' Thru," which she wrote for the film Transamerica and performs over its closing credits. Her earlier nomination came for the title song of her 1980 film debut, 9 To 5, but it lost to the title song from Fame. Dolly's composition this year will face off against "In the Deep" from Crash by Kathleen "Bird" York and Michael Becker and "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp" from Hustle & Flow by Jordan Houston, Cedric Coleman and Paul Beauregard, as voters only selected three nominees from this year's 42 eligible songs. The film also received a Best Actress nomination for star Felicity Huffman. While the soundtrack has been available since December for download from iTunes, it won't come out on CD until next Tuesday (reserve your copy here). Dolly wrote the song of looking to Jesus for guidance in the travels of life to become who one really is deep down inside as a direct response to the film, a road comedy about a conservative man on the cusp of an operation to become a woman who has to first cross the country with the son she never knew existed. Dolly has said the lyrics were also inspired by real-life transsexual friends and their struggles she witnessed. The tune previously won Best Song at film festivals in Phoenix and Las Vegas and was nominated for the same honor at both the Critics' Choice Awards and Golden Globe Awards, losing at the former to Al Kapone's "Hustle & Flow (It Ain't Over)" from Hustle & Flow and at the latter to Bernie Taupin and Gustavo Santaolalla's "A Love That Will Never Grow Old," which Emmylou Harris performed in Brokeback Mountain but which was ruled ineligible for Oscar consideration. Winners of this year's Oscars will be announced live from Hollywood on ABC March 5. Traditionally, all nominated songs are performed during the telecast, often by those who sing them in the film, so it is likely Dolly will get an Oscar performance invitation (her third time to sing on the program, as she performed "9 To 5" when it was nominated as well as "The Day I Fall In Love" with James Ingram when it was nominated from 1994's Beethoven's 2nd, but the nomination is for the composers, not the performers).
Duet Moving Up GAC Chart, Too A reader pointed out to me Monday that I had been neglecting to track the progress of the video for "When I Get Where I'm Going" by Dolly and Brad Paisley on cable channel Great American Country, so here's an update! The video debuted on the network's viewer-voted countdown three weeks ago, and in Friday's chart, it inched up one notch to No. 7. You may vote for the video here. Also, GAC added a spot in the last week or so to vote for Dolly's "Imagine" video from Those Were The Days. Since you may select up to five videos on your daily ballot, go and vote for both of them! Thanks, Kenny!
Dolly Up For 'CW' Honors Country Weekly magazine announced in the Feb. 13 issue on newsstands this week that it is asking readers to vote for "Country's All-Time Greats." Ballots may be mailed in from the magazine or completed online at the publication's Web site here. Five finalists in each category will be revealed in the March 27 issue (which should be out around March 13), with final winners announced May 8. Dolly is among the preliminary nominees for Country's Greatest Female Artist and for Country's Greatest Song for "9 To 5." I found it interesting that they chose that one over "I Will Always Love You" and "Islands In The Stream," which CMT selected as the genre's all-time greatest love song and duet, respectively. She was not offered as a choice in the Greatest Duo/Group or Greatest Album categories. Granted, all of the magazine's picks for duo or group were exclusively duos and groups who didn't perform as solo artists, except for The Judds, but she and Porter Wagoner were one of the most successful long-time duos in the field. Also, most country music critics consider Coat Of Many Colors among the 10 best albums of all time in the genre, and Country Weekly didn't list it in the 25 options for this ballot. However, you may write-in any other potential nominee that you choose for any category. The issue also includes a large photo of Dolly with her GuitarTown sculpture in Nashville as well as a shot from the early 1970s with the man referred to as "The Mayor of Music Row."
'Come Back To Me' Kansas City's Late Night Theatre has announced the return this year of Come Back to the 9 to 5 Dolly Parton, Dolly Parton, the troupe's satirical send-up of Dolly's classic film 9 To 5 (with its title taken from the drama Come Back to the Five and Dime Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean). The show tells the same basic story of the movie using the same characters but exaggerates the action and the attributes of the stars who performed in the original. For instance, when it debuted at the theatre in 2001-2002, Lily Tomlin's Violet was presented as a brassy lesbian and Dolly's Doralee went through constant wig changes representing each of Dolly's major hair eras. The revamping of the show is in honor of the troupe's 10th anniversary, during which they are revisiting several of their lampooning performances from the past. Come Back to the 9 to 5 Dolly Parton, Dolly Parton runs July 21-Sept. 2.
Bluegrass Chart Update The new Bluegrass Unlimited charts for February see The Grascals' self-titled debut CD with Dolly on "Viva Las Vegas" slip three spots to No. 8 for the month. It had previously peaked at No. 2.
'Dukes' Up For Razzie Gold Good thing Dolly turned down the role eventually assumed by Linda Carter as the love interest for Willie Nelson's Uncle Jessie in the film adaptation of The Dukes Of Hazzard, as the film on Monday garnered the second-most nominations for the 26th Annual Razzies, or Golden Raspberry Awards, which "honor" the year's absolute worst in cinema. The film is up for Worst Screenplay, Worst Director, Worst Remake or Sequel, Worst Screen Couple, Worst Supporting Actress, Worst Supporting Actor and Worst Picture. Unfortunately, Dolly is not a complete stranger to the Razzies. In 1985, her film Rhinestone took home Worst Actor for Sylvester Stallone and Worst Song for Dolly herself as the songwriter for "Drinkenstein." Dolly was also nominated for Worst Song for "Sweet Lovin' Friends" and Worst Musical Score, while the movie received nominations for Worst Picture, Worst Supporting Actor, Worst Director and Worst Screenplay. Since then, the musical "honors" have been dropped from the program.
Jan. 30: Oscar Noms Tuesday The big day is almost here! Academy Award nominations are to be announced Tuesday morning, and Dolly is a favorite to get her second Oscar nod, this time for the tune "Travelin' Thru" from the film Transamerica. She was previously nominated for Achievement in Music, Original Song, for "9 To 5" 25 years ago. Nominations will be revealed from Hollywood at 5:30 a.m. Pacific/8:30 a.m. Eastern and are usually broadcast live on television. Meanwhile, the song continues to get good press. The Boston Globe on Sunday profiled several contenders for the Oscars and said Dolly's tune stands out. The reviewer noted: "The movies would be wise to put Dolly Parton's music to work as often as possible." Read the article here. And The Edmonton Sun reviewed the soundtrack here over the weekend, giving it four out of five stars and calling it "terrific." Reserve your copy of the soundtrack, coming out next week, here!
Kenny & Dolly, Together Again? Could legendary country duo Kenny Rogers and Dolly be heading back to the studio in the near future? Sure, says Rogers, who made the comments prior to a concert last week in Greeneville, Tenn. Asked by both Bristol TV station WCYB (Thanks, Chris!) and local newspaper The Greeneville Sun about the possibility the two could record another duet, he said they absolutely would if they found a song that fit. He told the paper that in preparing his new CD, Water And Bridges, which hits stores March 21, they looked at several songs as possible duets but didn't find the right one to put on the album. He added: "Dolly and I are always looking for songs, and if we found that great song that would work for both of us, then I know I would do it — and I think she would as well," before praising her current top 5 hit with Brad Paisley, "When I Get Where I'm Going." He explained: "It's a great song. They sound so good together!" Read more from his interview and a review of the concert here. The two first worked together in 1983 on "Islands In The Stream," which was the biggest-selling song of the year when it was released. They put out a double-platinum Christmas album the next year, Once Upon A Christmas, and offered two subsequent duets, the country No. 1 "Real Love" in 1985 and the No. 21 "Love Is Strange" in 1990. They also toured together throughout the mid-and-late-1980s and recorded two television concert specials. They were not partnered professionally again until Rogers put out Back To The Well in 2003 with the Dolly-penned collaboration "Undercover." That tune had been slated as the project's second single, then pushed back to be its third single, then pushed back to not be a single at all. At the time, it appeared their partnership could be over for good, as Rogers complained that no one in the music business got excited about the duet and it seemed the pair had lost their "electricity," explaining: "Everything like that has its time, and Dolly and I had our time before, and I just don't think it means anything anymore." Then they reunited last summer to perform "Islands In The Stream" in a television special concert as CMT's No. 1 duet of all time, after which it appears they decided to look for more songs to sing together again.
Pinmonkey Update You may now advance order your copy of the March 7 release Big Shiny Cars from country band Pinmonkey from Amazon.com. As was previously reported here, the disc is slated to include a yet-to-be-announced Dolly cover. At the time this was revealed, it was noted that the band had been performing her tune "Down" in concert for about a year, so that could be the song selected for the CD. Now, the band has created a page on MySpace.com here which includes a half-minute sample of their version of "Down," further suggesting that will be the one to come out on the new album. Reserve the CD here! (And while you're at MySpace, visit the Dollymania page here and sign up to be one of our "friends"!)
Jan. 28: A&E: Dolly 'Biography' Coming In March Cable television network A&E announced Friday that Dolly is finally getting an installment of its Biography series. The two-hour special will premiere at 8 p.m. Eastern on March 31, with a repeat at midnight.
'Trans' Talk Dolly's Golden Globe-nominated "Travelin' Thru" from the soundtrack for the film Transamerica is getting some good marks this week. The Nashville City Paper reviewed the CD, which comes out Feb. 7 but is currently available for downloading from iTunes, saying Dolly's composition "puts the perfect wrap on the movie, delivering a song that expertly unveils the agony behind the character's personality and her hope for eventual peace." Read it here. And although The Miami Herald mistakenly lists the disc as being released next week, it says the song is considered the unofficial front-runner for this year's Best Original Song at the Academy Awards and calls it "charming, comfy and familiar sounding." Read more here. Reserve your copy of the CD here!
Paisley Disc Goes Platinum Thanks largely to the touching duet "When I Get Where I'm Going" with Dolly, Brad Paisley's CD Time Well Wasted was announced this week as his fourth disc to reach platinum status for shipping more than 1 million copies. It's also his fastest million-seller, reaching that level just five months after its release. Their collaboration gains two spots this week on the unofficial Power Source Christian country singles chart to reach No. 4, and on CMT's Top Twenty Countdown Thursday, the tune rose four to No. 16 in its second week. On another unofficial chart, the Indie World Country independent labels country singles chart, Dolly's cover of "Both Sides Now" from her own Those Were The Days inches up one to No. 8.
U.K. Interview Posted Dolly had a great interview in Britain's The Independent Friday focusing on her current album, turning 60 and more. Titled "Dolly Parton: Homecoming Queen" (because she was interviewed while at Dollywood in September), I'm told the print version runs two pages and features a great half-page photo of her with her hands on her cheeks, although the image isn't posted with the online version, available here. Thanks, Gerard!
Get In Dolly's Pants, Literally A representative of the PTA at Rosedale Elementary School in Salem, Ore., alerted me to an online auction for a pair of Dolly's personal pants which she has autographed, plus a certificate of authenticity and autographed photo, all of which are being sold to raise funds for the rural public school. Bids may be placed through Feb. 4 here. Thanks!
Another Report On Park's New Ride Speaking of Dollywood, The Knoxville News-Sentinel on Thursday noted the progress on this year's new addition, Timber Tower, complete with a photo of the construction and a note that the park's new product marketing manager, Tim Berry, rode it in Belgium and while thrilling, "it doesn't scare you so bad that you wouldn't want to ride it again. It's a very repeatable ride." As was previously reported here, this will be the ride's debut in the Western Hemisphere, as other versions opened last year in Belgium and France and a third recently opened in China. Read more here.
Warhol Shot On Display In D.C. Wanna see one of Andy Warhol's large Dolly paintings on display? You have a chance through Feb. 20 at the Corcoran Museum in Washington, D.C. See a review of the show from George Washington University's GW Hatchethere.
Was It The Film's Only Laugh? For a laugh, check out the list of 2005's 10 worst films as compiled by the University of Nevada at Las Vegas student newspaper The Rebel Yell. Dolly gets a mention in there. The reviewer says here that Sandra Bullock's Miss Congeniality 2: Armed And Fabulous was the third-worst movie of the year. However, he says, the scene where she tackles Dolly is funny, but apparently the only one he found humorous in the entire film, noting "a comedy needs more than one laugh to be a comedy."
Hello, Earl? I'm told a radio report quoted My Name Is Earl star Jason Lee as saying he would love for Dolly to play his love interest in his NBC comedy series. Thanks, Dawn!
Jan. 26: UPDATE: 'Going' Still Gaining In Billboard "When I Get Where I'm Going" with Brad Paisley gains one more spot to No. 4 in the Feb. 4 Billboard country singles chart, it was announced Thursday. The song slips one to No. 57 on the all-genre Hot 100 pop chart but rises six to No. 35 on the Hot 100 airplay-only chart. On the pop-genre-only Pop 100 tally, it moves up four to No. 90. The video also makes it to No. 22 on the magazine's top 25 video chart. In Canada, the song increases two to No. 24 on the pop singles chart.
'Days' Gone From Idie Tally Dolly's covers CD, Those Were The Days, falls off the 50-position independent label albums chart in the Feb. 4 Billboard numbers, down from No. 45 the previous week, its 14th. On the country side, the disc slips four to No. 61 in its 15th week. Martina McBride's Timeless, featuring Dolly on "I Still Miss Someone," drops one to No. 14 country and falls 13 to No. 68 pop and comprehensive in its 14th chart week. The album inches down one to No. 6 country and nine to No. 64 pop in Canada. Brad Paisley's Time Well Wasted, featuring "When I Get Where I'm Going," gains one to No. 17 country but slips four to No. 75 pop and three to No. 75 comprehensive in its 23rd week. In Canada, it gains five to No. 8 country and 48 points to No. 87 pop. George Jones's Hits I Missed . . . And One I Didn't, with Dolly on "The Blues Man," gains four to No. 62 country in its 19th week. Kenny Rogers's 42 Ultimate Hits, with "Islands In The Stream," gains four to No. 64 in its 47th chart week. Bettye LaVette's I've Got My Own Hell To Raise, with its cover of "Little Sparrow," loses three to No. 8 in its 17th week on the blues albums chart. Rhonda Vincent's Ragin' Live, with her version of "Jolene," remains steady at No. 7 in its 46th week on the bluegrass albums chart. American Idol winner Carrie Underwood's Some Hearts remains at No. 1 country and slips one to No. 4 pop with 10th-week sales of 73,000, while Johnny Cash's The Legend Of Johnny Cash remains at No. 2 country and gains five to No. 5 pop in its 13th chart week on sales of 55,000 units.
'Going' Continues 'R&R' Rise Dolly's recording of "When I Get Where I'm Going" with Brad Paisley is just one notch away from becoming the top country song in Canada, according to the Jan. 27 Radio & Records magazine singles charts released Wednesday. The song gains one spot for the week to No. 2 on the Canadian country tally, also gaining one on the publication's U.S. country list to reach No. 4 stateside.
Reese Added To Dolly Actress Pool The Knoxville News-Sentinel celebrity and television columnist Terry Morrow reported in his blog on the newspaper's Web site here Wednesday that both Reese Witherspoon and Kristin Chenoweth are possible contenders to play Dolly if the stage musical based on her life she is currently penning makes its way to Broadway. Chenoweth, currently seen on The West Wing, had previously been mentioned by Dolly herself as being in talks to possibly star in the role. Both the Tony-winning Chenoweth and Golden Globe-winning Witherspoon, who played Dolly friend June Carter Cash in the hit biopic Walk The Line, are confessed major Dolly fans who consider her one of their top idols.
Park's Latest Expansion On Track Dollywood's new $6.5 million Timber Tower ride is on schedule for its planned opening date on April 1, the park announced this week. In a press release, it was noted that the footing and foundation are complete on the new offering and a 93-ton counterweight used in the ride's operation will soon be installed. The first and only ride of its type in North America (there are two in Europe), it features a 2.50-minute ride where patrons are rotated on a disc 11 times a minute on their way up the 65-foot-tall tower. Once at the top, it begins to swing side to side before making six complete "dips" at a 60-degree angle toward a 5,100-square-foot pond below. The ride will anchor the new Timber Canyon area with a pair of 30-foot towers featuring twin-seat car rides called Lumberjack Lifts, an interactive children's play area titled Lil' Loggers' Landing and a themed 150-seat LumberCamp restaurant.
Great Photo Available I hadn't seen this August posting before, so I doubt many of you had either, and I thought I'd pass it along when I stumbled upon it this week :) When Dolly started her "Vintage Tour" last fall, Kustom Amplification put a piece on its Web site here about an amp which Dolly was using on the road, complete with a photo of her sitting on the equipment.
Another Library Note The Robertson County Times this week profiled last week's kick-off of Dolly's Imagination Library literacy program in the community, complete with photos from the event. Take a look here!
Jan. 25: TV Station Posts Dolly Cas Walker Clip Knoxville TV station WBIR on Tuesday posted this week's "Our Stories" segment focusing on legendary local politician, grocery magnate and entertainment czar Cas Walker, on whose program Dolly got her start as a child. The video version of the story includes a clip of Dolly (appearing to be around age 20 or so) performing "How Great Thou Art." See it here!
Dollywood Offer Ends Soon Your last chance to get a Dollywood two-year season pass expires in just a few weeks! The new offer for a two-year pass at the pre-season prices ends at 6 p.m. Eastern on Jan. 31 and is only available online here. Traditionally, pass prices at the park increase every year, and they also increase after mid-March as the annual opening day approaches. So getting two years at the pre-season price could be a fairly significant discount. And for those wishing to perform at the park, talent auditions will be held Jan. 27 at Dollywood for all performers and Jan. 29 for musicians only, concluding this year's five-city audition schedule for the 2006 season. Audition requirements and other information is available from 865-428-9553.
Jan. 24: Library Notes From Across The Country Dolly's Imagination Library literacy program continued to get great press around the nation on Monday, with several newspapers continuing to pick up the Associated Press article profiling the program (previously linked from this page in Sunday night's update). In addition, The Tennessean on Monday noted the adoption of the project in Bedford County, Tenn., here, and central Indiana parenting magazine Indy's Child featured a column here covering efforts this month to launch the program in the Indianapolis area.
Another 'Days' Review Thanks to Ed for passing along another mostly positive review of Dolly's covers collection, Those Were The Days. Music Box Online gives the CD three stars, saying that while some of Dolly's takes on the political songs from the '60s and '70s are "polite, saccharine" recordings, her lively versions of "Me And Bobby McGee," "Crimson And Clover," "Both Sides Now" and "The Cruel War," among others, are well worth hearing. Read more here.
Jan. 23: 'Country Weekly' Cover Story Shake-Up It appears Dolly's upcoming cover of Country Weekly may be in jeopardy, Dollymania has learned. As was previously reported here, readers of the site who are also members of the magazine's Readers' Panel, which helps the publication select stories and cover art, had confirmed that it had asked them to vote last weekend between two covers -- one featuring a Dolly cover story and the other not. The Dolly cover apparently won, as a few days later they were asked to narrow the selection down between two versions of the Dolly cover story. However, they alert me that this weekend a third ballot was sent to them to choose between the Dolly cover which won the previous round of voting and a new cover. One panelist said the new cover story focuses on the developing news from last week that Kristen Hall was leaving the trio Sugarland. Another said in the past two years he has been a panelist, this is the first time he can recall the publication seeking more than two votes on a single cover. However, if the Sugarland issue wins, the magazine could simply postpone its Dolly cover story for a couple more weeks and run it later.
AP Plugs Library Around The Country The Associated Press over the weekend offered a fairly lengthy overview of Dolly's nationwide Imagination Library literacy program, including an interview with Dolly herself and comments from Gov. Phil Bredesen (D-Tenn.) and others involved in its efforts. It also reviews several of Dolly's other charitable endeavors over the years, noting that they can only list a few of them because most of her philanthropy is done anonymously. See the story in The Washington Post here.
A few TV stations on Saturday passed along an Associated Press brief on the success of the program which appeared to be a much-abbreviated version of the story noted above. Take a read from NewsChannel 3 WREG in Memphis here.
And TV station WTVF NewsChannel 5 in Nashville on Sunday mentioned a kick-off held Saturday to welcome nearby Cheatham County as the 87th in Tennessee to sign up for the program. Read it here.
New '9 To 5' Cover Out Thanks to Will for alerting me to a recently-released cover of Dolly's classic "9 To 5." A new European group called New Emotion last month released a killer techno recording of the tune, available on an EP CD with six different remixes on Absolute Records overseas. The set is available as an import title from Amazon.com here.
Jan. 21: Emmylou Premieres PETA Spots Dolly's public service announcement for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) got a big push Friday when pal Emmylou Harris screened it for the media as part of an ad campaign aimed at urging pet owners to bring their chained dogs indoors during the cold. At Nashville's Hermitage Hotel, Harris announced the campaign and played its three commercials, which are available for viewing on PETA's Web site here. Dolly's features her song "Will He Be Waiting" (the 1999 version from The Grass Is Blue). Actress Kathy Najimy lip-synchs to the song as she rushes home in her car to meet her dog -- as a reminder that pets need company, too. Another uses Loretta Lynn's 1971 song "I Wanna Be Free" as a dog is shown chained to a tree in a cold rain. The final one features Harris filmed at the Ryman Auditorium discussing her involvement with PETA and the work that the organization accomplishes. Although all three commercials were completed about two years ago (and previously reported on here), PETA is just now rolling them out in this coordinated campaign.
'CW' Cover Coming Dolly will likely grace the cover of Country Weekly in the next few weeks, I'm told. Two separate readers of the site who are members of the magazine's Readers' Panel, which helps suggest content and covers for the publication, informed me this week that Dolly was among the cover suggestions sent out last weekend. She apparently got the most votes, because the magazine asked panelists to vote again on two versions of a Dolly cover to accompany an interview with her on turning 60 and being "as inspiring, funny, generous and sexy as ever." The sample cover was dated Feb. 27, but the issues generally hit newsstands two or three weeks prior to the date printed on them. Thanks, guys!
No. 1 On The Way? Dolly's recording of "When I Get Where I'm Going" with Brad Paisley from his album Time Well Wasted will be her first No. 1 in 15 years, one music industry insider predicts in an Associated Press story posted Friday night about the duet. The story largely tells the story which is already familiar to most Dolly fans about how Paisley chose to record the song as a tribute to his aunt shortly after her death due to cancer and how he came to invite Dolly to sing harmony on it. However, near the story's end, the reporter spoke with John Hart, president of Bullseye Marketing Research, a Nashville radio monitoring and research firm, who said he expects the song, currently No. 5 on Billboard, to make it all the way to No. 1. And while it is credited on the charts as being with Dolly, he lamented that most radio announcers don't mention her name when identifying it on the air, which could lead many listeners to not even realize she is on it. A shame, he said, because her vocals are one of the main reasons he believes it has become such a big hit. Read more here.
Still Rolling On The Minor Charts Meanwhile, "When I Get Where I'm Going" continues to advance on the Power Source magazine Christian country singles chart, moving up one notch to No. 6, it was announced Friday. Over on the Rough Stock country chart, it gains one to No. 14 for the week. And on the unofficial Indie World Country independent labels country singles chart, Dolly's version of "Both Sides Now" from Those Were The Days moves up one to No. 9.
Post-Birthday Notes The News Letter, a newspaper in Northern Ireland, on Friday profiled Dolly and her recent accomplishments in recognition of her 60th birthday Thursday. The article discussed the BBC Radio 2 special honoring her earlier this week, her long career, Dollywood and more, although nearly all of was obviously summarized from recent Dollymania reports :) Read it here.
Library Coverage The Tennessean on Friday covered Thursday's Imagination Library kick-off in Robertson County. Read more here. The event also garnered a mention from Nashville TV station NewsChannel 5 WTVF here.
Jan. 20: 'Going' Makes Top 5 Dolly is back in the top five Billboard country chart! "When I Get Where I'm Going" with Brad Paisley rises two more digits to No. 5 in the Jan. 28 country singles chart, it was announced Thursday. The song also gets a new peak on the all-genre Hot 100 pop chart, moving up nine spots to No. 56, and Hot 100 airplay-only chart, gaining four to No. 41. On the pop-genre-only Pop 100 tally, it inches up five to No. 94. In Canada, the song rises five to No. 26 on the pop singles chart. The video for the song debuts this week on CMT's Top Twenty Countdown at No. 20, and the duet is this week's No. 1 song on the Radiowave country chart for Internet radio stations. Thanks, Chad, for alerting me to those last two!
'Days' Still Holding On A Little In its 14th week on the charts, Dolly's covers project, Those Were The Days, continues a slow slide. The CD inches down six spots to No. 57 country and five places to No. 45 for independent label albums in the Jan. 28 Billboard charts. Martina McBride's Timeless, with Dolly on her new single, "I Still Miss Someone," loses two to No. 13 country and is down five to No. 55 pop and comprehensive in its 13th chart week. Her project gains one to No. 5 country and three to No. 55 pop in Canada. Brad Paisley's Time Well Wasted, featuring the hit "When I Get Where I'm Going," slips one to No. 18 country but gains six to No. 71 pop and three to No. 72 comprehensive in its 22nd week. In Canada, it rises a dozen digits to No. 13 country. George Jones's Hits I Missed . . . And One I Didn't, with the Dolly duet "The Blues Man," falls two to No. 66 country in its 18th week. Kenny Rogers's 42 Ultimate Hits, featuring "Islands In The Stream," gains one to No. 68 in its 46th chart week. Bettye LaVette's I've Got My Own Hell To Raise, with its cover of "Little Sparrow," falls one to No. 5 in its 16th week on the blues albums chart. Rhonda Vincent's Ragin' Live, with a cover of "Jolene," moves up two to No. 7 in its 45th week on the bluegrass albums chart. American Idol winner Carrie Underwood's Some Hearts remains at No. 1 country and climbs two to No. 3 pop with ninth-week sales of 77,000, while Johnny Cash's The Legend Of Johnny Cash remains at No. 2 country and gains four to No. 10 pop in its 12th chart week.
Birthday Celebrations Some kids in Dolly's hometown of Sevierville, Tenn., celebrated her -- and their -- birthday in style this week, The Mountain Press reported. On Monday, five children who were born in the Ft. Sanders Sevier County Medical Center's Dolly Parton Birthing Unit on the same day as Dolly's birth were welcomed in to observe her 60th birthday and their own with a party. The facility was named after her following her gift of financial support in building the center. Staff members took a photo of the children to send to her as a birthday present. Read more here.
Apparently in recognition of her milestone birthday, MSN included Dolly in its five "suggested searches" on its main page Thursday. The other suggested topics were the Sundance film festival, wolf spiders, the fittest city and the history of tango. Thanks, Jay!
The webmaster of fan site Dolly Online.net tells me he marked the day with a party where he and some other fans released 60 pink balloons with wildflower seeds inside them (a reference to her recording of "Where Have All The Flowers Gone").
Dollymania observed the day with a special birthday wish animated gif which was posted on the front page of the site from late Wednesday night through late Thursday night. If you missed it, check it out here!
Behind-The-Scenes Of Dolly's Tour Want to know what it was like to tour with Dolly? Well, guitarist Tim Sparks, who opened nine of her Midwestern dates on "The Vintage Tour" last fall, is interviewed about the experience in his hometown paper, The Frazee Forum in Frazee, Minn. He described how everyone who worked on the tour just loved Dolly and how she stayed on her bus all the time. He also paid respect to her musicians. Read the story here.
Latest Library Happenings About 100 children in Bedford County, Tenn., signed up for Dolly's Imagination Library on its first day of availability there, The Shelbyville Times-Gazette reported Thursday. Read about Wednesday's celebration for the program here.
Win Something! Christian over at Dolly Parton Central tells me because his site was down for a few days during his most recent contest, the first 10 folks to visit his site and e-mail him will be entered for the current drawing.
Jan. 19: HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DOLLY! Sixty years ago Thursday, Dr. Robert F. Thomas delivered a bouncing baby girl named Dolly Rebecca to Avie Lee Parton and her husband, Robert Lee Parton. He was paid with a sack of cornmeal, and millions of fans around the world are forever thankful for the joy she has brought to their lives. We hope she has a wonderful day as she turns 60, or as she has been calling it, "Sexty!" (And check out some birthday wishes from fans on Ultimate Dolly Parton U.K. and on CMT.com's message boards.)
Movin' Up On 'R&R' "When I Get Where I'm Going," the hit duet by Dolly and Brad Paisley, continues its march up the charts this week. In the Jan. 20 tallies from Radio & Records magazine released Wednesday, the tune moves up two spots on the U.S. country chart to No. 5 for the week and also gains two on the Canadian country singles tally to reach No. 3.
On The List Although Dolly's own Those Were The Days didn't make the top 25, the results of the annual Nashville Scene critics' music survey included a couple of Dolly-related projects. Brad Paisley's Time Well Wasted, featuring Dolly on two tracks, came in at No. 6, while Martina McBride's Timeless, with Dolly on its current single, "I Still Miss Someone," was selected for the No. 13 spot.
Library Note The Robertson County Times on Wednesday previewed Thursday's celebration in Springfield, Tenn., to observe the adoption of her national Imagination Library literacy program there. Read more here.
Catch Grascals Video For Dolly fans who fell in love with the tune "Me And John And Paul" by her opening act the past couple of years, The Grascals, be sure to catch the Great American Country premiere of the song's video at around 4:55 p.m. Eastern Thursday. The video has been available on CMT.com here for a little over a week.
Jan. 18: BBC Celebrates Dolly's Birthday The BBC's radio special honoring Dolly on her 60th birthday aired Tuesday, and you may take a listen to it online here. Host Nick Barraclough led Dolly through a very comprehensive discussion of her life and career, beginning with her childhood, her early years in Nashville, her time with Porter Wagoner, her move to pop, her films and her return to roots music in recent years. She tells the stories behind many of her most famous songs, which are played throughout the show, and on many of them she offers more detail and insight than she has in just about any previous interviews. Friends who offer their praise include country music historian Bob Oermann comparing her genius to Mozart, Porter Wagoner discussing their longtime partnership, Kenny Rogers talking of her genuineness and Alison Krauss hilariously recounting how she would burst into uncontrollable tears for years each time she'd meet Dolly in person because of how in awe she is of her talent.
Dolly Wasn't Only Globe No-Show Although she didn't win, Dolly did get a mention in coverage of Monday's Golden Globes Awards from The Hollywood Reporter Tuesday. Lamenting how boring the awards were, the publication noted it's usually "THE" party to attend in Hollywood but this year found "tepid" acceptance speeches, no outrageous happenings and no political statements. The commentators added: "The Golden Globes telecast always can be counted on to round up many of Hollywood's hottest and biggest celebs. This year, the list of no-shows also was impressive. They included nominees Joanne Woodward, Glenn Close, Halle Berry, Woody Allen and Dolly Parton, as well as winner Paul Newman." Read the full story here.
Laura Loves Dolly In the past couple of years, it's become fashionable to ask celebrities in interviews who is on their iPod, and political figures aren't an exception. At the end of a political interview in The Washington Times published Monday, First Lady Laura Bush was asked who is on her iPod, and she replied Tina Turner and Dolly, noting specifically one of Dolly's most unique cover songs, taken from her 2002 collection Halos & Horns. "He (George W.) likes country music a little bit more than I do," Bush said. "Although I actually really am very fond of country music, as well. One of the songs on my IPod that I love is Dolly Parton singing 'Stairway to Heaven.' So that's sort of a combination, country and pop." Read the interview here. Thanks, Terry and Laura!
Jan. 17: Globes Pass Over Dolly Well, Dolly's dream for Globe gold was passed on Monday when "A Love That Will Never Grow Old" by Gustavo Santaolalla and Bernie Taupin (performed by pal Emmylou Harris) from Brokeback Mountain was named Best Original Song at the Golden Globe Awards, beating out her nominated tune, "Travelin' Thru" from the film Transamerica. Dolly did not appear to be present at the ceremony. The other nominees for the honor were "Christmas In Love" by Tony Renis and Marva Jan Marrow (performed by Renee Olstead) from Christmas In Love, "There's Nothing Like A Show On Broadway" by Mel Brooks (performed by Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick) from The Producers and "Wunderkind" by Alanis Morissette from The Chronicles of Narnia. The song was played a second time later during the ceremony as the film's star, Felicity Huffman, walked to the stage to accept the Best Actress award. This was Dolly's fifth Globe nod, having previously been nominated once for Best Song, once for Best New Film Star and twice for Best Actress. The soundtrack on which her song appears is available now for digital purchase from iTunes and will be released on CD Feb. 7. Get your copy here! Dolly's tune is next expected to garner an Academy Awards nomination. Those will be announced Jan. 31, with winners revealed March 5. Over the past 15 years, the winner for the Globe for Best Song also took home that honor at the Academy Awards 69 percent of the time. In the past five years, that average has been 40 percent of the time. This year, the Globe winner cannot be used to predict the Oscar race because "A Love That Will Never Grow Old" was deemed ineligible for the Academy Awards. Of the Globe nominees, only Dolly and Mel Brooks are able to compete for the Oscar this year.
Ready For The Big Day Celebrations are getting underway for Dolly's big 60th birthday Thursday, and even though she'll be partying in California, folks back home will be recognizing the day as well. Knoxville radio station WIVK, where she performed as a teen-ager, will observe the occasion with Dolly music, Dollywood ticket give-aways and audio interviews with her over the years from the station's archives throughout the day starting at 6 a.m. Thursday. Those outside of its listening area may tune in via the station's Web site here! And I'm told that in her native Sevier County, Tenn., Big Moma's Karaoke Café in Seymour will have a Dolly look-a-like contest. Thanks, Diane and Jamie!
New Single Out Even with a current top 10 single with Brad Paisley and her own single from her current CD (although it's not getting airplay), Dolly has yet another single which shipped to radio last week. RCA moved "I Still Miss Someone" to radio as the second single from Martina McBride's Timeless album. The tune features Dolly on harmony vocals, and the CD single is credited as "Martina McBride (Special Guest Dolly Parton)," which makes it appear that the label will ask it be credited on the charts under both names. The radio promo CD singles began showing up over the weekend on eBay, and while requests for confirmation of the single's release by Dollymania to McBride's publicist weren't returned by press time Monday, a reader alerted me to a posting by her webmaster on the message board of her web site announcing the new single. The album's first single, "(I Never Promised You A) Rose Garden," peaked at No. 18 country and No. 98 pop. Thanks!
More Praise For 'Days' Music site Pop Matters recently offered its opinion on Dolly's Those Were The Days CD, giving it a mixed but mostly positive response. The reviewer found her take on the title track "lettuce-limp" and hated "Blowing In The Wind," which he admitted had little to do with her version but he dislikes the song itself as "a hackneyed old piece of pig's ear." Even though he doesn't care for "Where Have All The Flowers Gone" and abhors John Lennon's "Imagine," he says Dolly's versions of them, however, made him a fan. Other standouts were "Where Do The Children Play," "Me And Bobby McGee" and "Crimson And Clover." Overall, he notes that Dolly's attempts result in a very successful project, something he doesn't think any other artist could have pulled off on this CD, except perhaps the Ramones. Read the full review here.
Latest Library Expansions The Tennessean on Monday noted here that Cheatham County, Tenn., on Saturday will become the 87th county in the state to adopt Dolly's nationwide literacy program, the Imagination Library. Elsewhere in the state, the Shelbyville Times-Gazette reminded readers here Monday that registration for the program there starts this week in Bedford County. Active in nearly 600 communities across 41 states, Dolly's program provides one free, hardcover, age-appropriate book each month to all children birth to age 5 whose parents sign up. It distributes more than 2.5 million books each year across the country with her charitable foundation covering administrative costs while local sponsors pay $27 per child annually for book purchases and shipping. In Dolly's native Tennessee, the state provides a matching grant to cover half of the local costs, an effort expected to bring the program to all 95 counties statewide in coming months.
Jan. 16: Gone Again Down Under Although it had returned after a one-week absence from the Australian top 20 country albums chart last week, Dolly's Those Were The Days once again falls off the chart Down Under, down from No. 17 last week, its 12th on the chart, it was announced Sunday.
It's Globes Time! The big night is here! Dolly is up for Best Original Song for "Travelin' Thru" from the film Transamerica at the Golden Globe Awards, with the winner to be announced Monday. The ceremony airs live beginning at 8 p.m. Eastern on NBC. Dolly faces off against "A Love that Will Never Grow Old" by Gustavo Santaolalla and Bernie Taupin (performed by pal Emmylou Harris) from Brokeback Mountain, "Christmas In Love" by Tony Renis and Marva Jan Marrow (performed by Renee Olstead) from Christmas In Love, "There's Nothing Like A Show On Broadway" by Mel Brooks (performed by Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick) from The Producers and "Wunderkind" by Alanis Morissette from The Chronicles of Narnia. The soundtrack featuring Dolly's song is available for download now from iTunes and will hit stores on CD Feb. 7. Reserve your copy here! This is Dolly's fifth Golden Globe nod, although she has never won. She had previously been up for Best Original Song for "9 To 5," the same year she was nominated for Best Actress and Best New Film Star for her debut role in that picture. She was also nominated for Best Actress for The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas. ("The Day I Fall In Love," which she performed with James Ingram from the film Beethoven's Second, was nominated in 1994 for Best Original Song, but the nomination is for the composer, not the performer, so that one doesn't count toward Dolly's total.)
Doing Well On Christian Chart "When I Get Where I'm Going," Dolly's hit duet with Brad Paisley from his CD Time Well Wasted, inches up one more spot to No. 7 on this week's Power Source magazine Christian country singles chart, it was announced Saturday.
Order '9 To 5' Special Edition Now! Amazon.com over the weekend added pages to reserve your copy of the 25th anniversary "Sexist, Egotistical, Lying, Hypocritical Bigot" edition of 9 To 5 for $14, which is $6 less than the studio's suggested price for retailers. As was reported here Friday night, the DVD hits stores April 4 chock full of special features, including deleted scenes, a gag reel, anniversary featurette, audio commentaries by Dolly, Jane Fonda, Dabney Coleman and one of the producers and much more. Reserve your copy of this special edition in widescreen here and full screen here!
Dolly On MMM I'm told Dolly's episode was great on Canadian cable channel MuchMoreMusic Friday. An episode of the network's Evolution series, which chronicles the development of genre-defining artists from the 80s and 90s and their contemporaries today, profiled Dolly and Shania Twain. The half-hour program focused primarily on music videos, although there were a few sound-bite type interview clips shown as well. In her comments, Dolly touched on the Dixie Chick controversy, saying, "We do live in America. I mean we do have freedom of speech, but you best be careful what you say or you'll get your ass in a sling," and on her career in general, saying: "When you start out in the business, you don't really know what your gonna do - you don't know if your gonna make it - you don't know if people are gonna love you, or if when you're older if you've left a good mark, or a bad one." Thanks, Sheldon!
Dolly On CMT CMT on Saturday aired its third installment from Dolly's backstage interview with Katie Cook from her Birmingham concert last month for its Insider program. This part focused on her turning 60 next Thursday (she said she likes to think she's similar to wine, improving with age) and her much-reported work on the Broadway adaptation of 9 To 5 to premiere in fall 2007 and writing a possible Broadway musical based on her life as well. The only new information was she revealed that if the one based on her life gets to the stage, she could possibly appear in it as a narrator, at least for the first few shows. She also joked about who could portray her in the project -- likely two or three actresses for different periods of her life, someone who can perform the songs, someone who looks like her, someone who is small in stature and build but who would "either have big boobs or we'll have to give 'em some!" Previously, Kristen Chenoweth has been mentioned as being interested in the role should the project come to fruition. The interview repeats Monday at 10:30 a.m. Eastern on CMT.
'O, Say Can You See' What is more American than Dolly singing the National Anthem? Well, the folks at the BBC must have thought that as they are using her recording of "The Star Spangled Banner" to announce the new version of the Dr. Who series coming to America. See an e-card featuring the song here which announces the selling of the new BBC series to the Sci-Fi Channel for U.S. broadcast later this year. Thanks, Jeff!
Another Tid-Bit Thanks to Cor for alerting me to the prominent use of Dolly's 1978 hit single with Linda Ronstadt, "I Never Will Marry," in the British series Vicar Of Dibley. On the show's most recent special, "Happy New Year," the lead character (played by Absolutely Fabulous co-creator Dawn French) laments approaching her 40th birthday with no man, no children and no prospects on the horizon. As she wanders the vicarage, Dolly and Linda's song about remaining single for all of one's life plays.
Radio Reminder Don't forget that Dolly's 60th birthday tribute program on BBC Radio 2 airs at 8:30 p.m. British time Tuesday. Listeners should be able to hear it on live streaming audio at that time (3:30 p.m. Eastern in the U.S.) online at the network's Web site here, and I suspect it will also be posted for a week or so afterward in the listen-on-demand section of the site. The hour-long Steel Magnolia: Dolly Parton at 60 special will feature an interview with Dolly herself as well as appearances by Kenny Rogers, Alison Krauss, Patty Loveless, Brad Paisley, Mindy Smith and Porter Wagoner.
Contest Covered The Mountain Press on Sunday reported here on the Sevierville Chamber of Commerce's second annual Mountain Soul Vocal Competition, where singers perform Dolly-penned tunes. As was previously announced here, audition tapes must be postmarked to the Chamber by April 11, and 20 contestants will be invited to perform in the program in Sevierville May 20 for cash prizes and a recording session. The application is available online from the Chamber's Bloomin Barbeque and Bluegrass Festival Web site here, and contestants are asked to confirm via a page here on Dollymania that their chosen song was, in fact, written by Dolly.
'9 To 5' 25th Anniversary Disc Coming And speaking of 9 To 5, Dolly had revealed in some of her later concerts on last year's tour that she had been involved in preparations for a 25th anniversary DVD package for her 1980 film debut, and the details have finally come out. Fox Home Entertainment on Friday announced the upcoming release with tons of special features will hit stores in separate widescreen and full screen editions on April 4 with a suggested retail price of $20. Called the "Sexist, Egotistical, Lying, Hypocritical Bigot Edition," bonus features will include audio commentary by Dolly, Jane Fonda, Dabney Coleman and producer Bruce Gilbert; a featurette on the anniversary titled Nine @ 25; 10 deleted scenes; gag reel; a feature remembering the film's director, the late Collin Higgins (who also directed Dolly in The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas); a "Singing 9 To 5" karaoke feature; the original theatrical trailer and a behind-the-scenes featurette. The film was first released on DVD in 2001, but the only special features included in that version were the trailer and a still image photo gallery. The new cover art is shown at left. Thanks, Maverick!
Writer Finds Honor In Nomination With Dolly The possibility of an Oscar nomination intrigues Memphis artist Al Kapone, but his biggest thrill for winning Best Song at this week's Critics' Choice Awards was the honor of being nominated alongside Dolly, he tells the city's Commercial Appeal this week. Kapone, who wrote "Hustle & Flow (It Ain't Over)" for the film Hustle & Flow, which beat Dolly's "Travelin' Thru" for the award, responded to the Academy Award buzz for his own song telling the paper: "Man, who knows? All I know is with this award I was nominated in the same category with Dolly Parton." He later added: "I had no idea the award was a huge deal until I saw all these stars, but like they say, it was an honor being nominated, especially when they said Al Kapone and Dolly Parton in the same sentence. . . This is crazy. First I get nominated with an icon like Dolly Parton, and then Reese Witherspoon is saying my name on stage. I'm loving it." Read the full story here.
Indie Update Dolly's cover of "Both Sides Now" from Those Were The Days inches up one notch to No. 10 on this week's unofficial Indie World Country independent labels country singles chart, it was announced Friday.
Vote For Dolly Thanks to Dawn for alerting me that fans may vote for Dolly's version of "Imagine" from Those Were The Days on Indianapolis radio station WFMS on their Web site here. You must register to vote, but Dolly's tune is under the "New Music Preview" category.
TV Reminder Don't forget to catch Dolly talking about turning 60 on CMT's Insider this weekend. The show premieres at 1:30 p.m. Eastern Saturday with repeats throughout the weekend. Also, don't forget to tune in for the Golden Globe Awards live on NBC starting at 8 p.m. Eastern Monday to see if Dolly wins Best Song for "Travelin' Thru!"
Jan. 13: 'Going' Still Climbing The Charts Dolly's biggest hit in a decade and a half continues to rise on the charts, as "When I Get Where I'm Going" with Brad Paisley inches up another spot to No. 7 in its 16th week on the Jan. 21 country singles chart, Billboard announced Thursday. The tune from Paisley's Time Well Wasted gains nine places to No. 65 on the all-genre Hot 100 pop chart, which combines airplay and single sales, although it is still shy of its previous peak at No. 62 on that tally. It reaches a new peak on the Hot 100 airplay-only chart, gaining four to No. 45, and it remains steady at No. 99 on the pop-genre-only Pop 100 list. Up north, the song moves up 11 notches to No. 31 on the Canadian pop singles chart.
'Days' Stagnant On The Charts Dolly's Those Were The Days sees very little movement on the Jan. 21 Billboard charts. The disc drops one to No. 51 in its 13th week on the country albums chart but rises one to No. 40 on the independent label albums chart. Martina McBride's Timeless, featuring Dolly harmony on "I Still Miss Someone," remains steady at No. 11 country and slips four to No. 50 pop and comprehensive in its 12th chart week. Her covers album slides one to No. 6 country but gains two to No. 58 pop in Canada. Brad Paisley's Time Well Wasted, with "When I Get Where I'm Going," remains steady at No. 17 country and moves up seven to No. 77 pop and nine to No. 75 comprehensive in its 21st week. In Canada, it inches down one to No. 25 country. George Jones's Hits I Missed . . . And One I Didn't, featuring Dolly on "The Blues Man," falls five to No. 64 country in its 17th week. Kenny Rogers's 42 Ultimate Hits, which includes "Islands In The Stream," re-enters the country albums chart for a 45th week at No. 69. Bettye LaVette's I've Got My Own Hell To Raise, including her cover of "Little Sparrow," gains three to No. 4 in its 15th week on the blues albums chart. Rhonda Vincent's Ragin' Live, featuring "Jolene," loses one to No. 9 in its 44th week on the bluegrass albums chart. American Idol winner Carrie Underwood's Some Hearts remains at No. 1 country and No. 5 pop with eighth-week sales of 81,000, while Johnny Cash's The Legend Of Johnny Cash remains at No. 2 country and gains one to No. 14 pop in its 11th chart week. After 38 weeks on the pop singles sales chart, the American Idol finalists' cover of the former Dolly and Julio Iglesias duet "When You Tell Me That You Love Me" falls off the 50-position list, down from No. 38 the previous week.
Another Review Canadian publication Hour this week reviewed Dolly's Those Were The Days, although the reviewer wasn't too impressed, giving it two stars, misidentifying "Blowin' In The Wind" as "Dust In The Wind," and saying it "kinda freaked me out." Read the full review here.
Library Happenings There were a couple of items Thursday related to Dolly's Imagination Library. The Tennessean reported here on a sign-up day at the Brentwood Library this weekend in Williamson County, and TV station News 14 Carolina here covered expansion of the program this week into Fayetteville, N.C.
Jan. 12: 'When I Get' To The R&R Top 10 Already a top 10 country hit on Billboard, "When I Get Where I'm Going" by Dolly and Brad Paisley also enters the top 10 in the Jan. 13 charts from Radio & Records, it was announced Wednesday in the magazine's first update of the year (it doesn't issue a chart for the last week and first week of the year, instead releasing an overall year tally at that time.) The duet advances six places on the U.S. country chart to No. 7 for the week, also rising 10 spots to No. 5 on the Canadian country singles list. With the passing of the holidays, Dolly's recording of "Baby It's Cold Outside" with Rod Stewart from his Stardust . . . The Great American Songbook: Volume III ends its second annual appearance on the publication's adult contemporary charts, falling out of the top 50 in both the U.S. and Canadian versions, down from Nos. 26 and 10, respectively.
European Updates Dolly's recordings weren't so lucky, however, overseas this week. The new European CMA charts released Wednesday saw "Imagine" from Those Were The Days falling off the top 20 country airplay singles chart in France, down from one week at No. 6. Also gone from the top 20 country airplay list in the U.K. were "If I Said You Had A Beautiful Body (Would You Hold It Against Me)" with The Bellamy Brothers from Angels & Outlaws, Vol. 1 and "Thank God I'm A Country Boy" with Roy Rivers from his CD Thank God I'm A Country Boy, down from Nos. 16 and 17, respectively.
Martina Disc Talked Up In 'Salon' Salon on Wednesday gave props to Martina McBride's covers disc, Timeless, which features Dolly harmony on "I Still Miss Someone." Although the article doesn't mention Dolly's participation, it does note that Dolly's covers collection, Those Were The Days, and George Jones's covers disc, Hits I Missed . . . And One I Didn't (which itself features a Dolly duet), may indicate that all three artists last year "turned their backs on contemporary country" and that, whether intentional or not, throw the gauntlet at "the facelessness of contemporary country." Read more here.
No Instruments Required Style Network host Isaac Mizrahi includes Dolly among the six lessons he tells TV Guide he's learned from hosting his new talk show. Under "No music? No problem!" he recounts Dolly's appearance on his program where she started playing her fingernails to accompany a song, calling it "brilliant, spontaneous and just a quintessential Dolly Parton moment." Read his piece here. His episode with Dolly repeats several times this month (see TV listings at left-hand side of news page.)
More Praise For 'Essential' GLBT newspaper The Chicago Free Press this week lauded the recent Dolly compilation two-disc set The Essential Dolly Parton as highlighting her "immeasurable contributions" to music, although it lamented that her disco hit "Baby I'm Burning" wasn't included. Read the review here.
Grascals Video Premieres Dolly's pals The Grascals this week debuted their first music video on CMT.com. Dolly fans around the nation came to love the moving tune, "Me And John And Paul," hearing the bluegrass band perform it as Dolly's opening act on her 2004 tour and again on more than a quarter of the dates on last year's "Vintage Tour." It's the second single from their debut disc, The Grascals, following their duet with Dolly on "Viva Las Vegas" as its first single. Take a peek at the video on their CMT page here.
Jan. 11: Dolly Documentary Showings Announced The dates and times for the world premiere showings of the Dolly fan documentary For The Love Of Dolly have been confirmed, the film's director tells Dollymania. As was previously announced here, the movie will be first seen by audiences as an official selection in the 2006 Miami International Film Festival. The project is scheduled to be screened at 9:15 p.m. Saturday, March 4, and again at 9:30 p.m. Thursday, March 9, at the Regal South Beach Cinema (1120 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach). If you missed it when first published last month, a review is available on the site's section dedicated to the project here.
One Year, 52,000 Books In Knoxville Area The Knoxville News-Sentinel on Tuesday profiled the one-year anniversary of Dolly's Imagination Library coming to Knox County, one of the largest in the state. In that time, 8,000 children have signed up for the program and received more than 52,000 free books. Read more here.
Running Into Dolly In Song Thanks to Tony for alerting me to a humorous mention of Dolly in a song on the new Josh Turner CD, Your Man, hitting stores Jan. 24. In the tune "Loretta Lynn's Lincoln," Turner imagines buying Lynn's former car and driving it around Nashville, including an encounter with Dolly when she recognizes the vehicle. You may listen to the album in a streaming audio preview on CMT.com.
Another Contest Teddy at new fan site DollyOnline.net asked that I alert everyone to two new contests he is offering. The first is a Dolly photo contest and the second is a Dolly story contest. Entries will be accepted through the end of the month. Visit his site for more information.
Sis Plays Atlanta I was also asked to pass along that Dolly's sister Stella will perform an intimate acoustic set Feb. 11 at Eddie's Attic in Decatur, Ga., outside of Atlanta. Seating is limited, and tickets are available here.
Jan. 10: Critics' Choice: Not Dolly "Hustle & Flow (It Ain't Over)" written by Al Kapone and performed by Terrence Howard from Hustle & Flow bested Dolly's "Travelin' Thru" Monday for Best Song at the 11th annual Critics' Choice Awards from Santa Monica. Dolly had written and performed the song for the film Transamerica, starring Best Actress nominee Felicity Huffman of Desperate Housewives fame as a pre-operative transsexual on a cross-country trip with a son she didn't know she had fathered. Other nominees for the honor were "A Love that Will Never Grow Old" (written by Gustavo Santaolalla and Bernie Taupin) as performed by Emmylou Harris in Brokeback Mountain, "Same In Any Language" by I Nine in Elizabethtown and "Seasons of Love" by Tracie Thoms, Jessie L. Martin and cast in Rent. Dolly's composition had previously won Best Song honors from the Phoenix Film Critics Society Awards and Las Vegas Film Critics Society Sierra Awards last month. In related news:
Dolly will be back on her old label, RCA, at least temporarily, for the release of the song. Nettwerk Records, the label which is releasing the soundtrack for the film, announced Monday that it had reached an agreement for its projects, including the Feb. 7 soundtrack with Dolly's tune, to be distributed through RCA Records Group. Dolly was one of RCA's biggest-selling stars of all time, recording for the label from 1967 through 1985. The soundtrack is currently available for downloading from iTunes and will be released on CD Feb. 7. Reserve your copy here! The CD shipped to radio on Monday with a requested add date of Jan. 23, so you might start hearing Dolly's song on the air in some markets soon!
Dolly next takes her chances at the Golden Globes next Monday. That ceremony airs live on NBC starting at 8 p.m. Eastern. There, Dolly faces off again against "A Love That Will Never Grow Old," and the other Globe nominees are "Christmas In Love" by Tony Renis and Marva Jan Marrow (performed by Renee Olstead) from Christmas In Love, "There's Nothing Like A Show On Broadway" by Mel Brooks (performed by Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick) from The Producers and "Wunderkind" by Alanis Morissette from The Chronicles of Narnia. It's Dolly's fifth Golden Globe nomination, although she has not won in the past. The next big Hollywood honors after that come with Academy Award nominations, which are announced Jan. 31 with winners revealed March 5. Dolly is favored to get a nomination there, too, but fellow Globe nominees "A Love That Will Never Grow Old," Christmas In Love" and "Wunderkind" were judged ineligible for Oscar consideration this year (from the Critics Choice nominees, "Seasons Of Love" is also ineligible).
Library Making Waves Dolly's Imagination Library got a few nods in the papers Monday. The Tennessean noted here that on Thursday, Jan. 19, which happens to be Dolly's 60th birthday, Robertson County will kick-off its participation in the program with a 7:30 a.m. ceremony at the Springfield City Hall boardroom, becoming the 86th of Tennessee's 95 counties to sign up. Over in Maryville, Tenn., The Daily Times reported here on how 2,100 children have already signed up there just a few months into the program's being offered in Blount County. Finally, Michigan's Bay City Times profiled the success of the program in two counties there, noting that nearly 3,900 children are currently receiving books each month thanks to the nationwide literacy project in its first year in their community. One of the program organizers there met Dolly prior to her Detroit concert this fall and noted: "She is somebody you can sit down and talk to. She's humble, and when we thanked her for this program she gave everyone else credit. She's quite a lady." Read more here.
Dolly On 'Insider' Again CMT announced Monday that another Dolly interview segment will be shown on this weekend's Insider. In recognition of her 60th birthday next week, she will offer her thoughts on aging and also discuss the Broadway shows she is currently writing. The episode premieres at 1:30 p.m. Eastern Saturday with repeats on Sunday and Monday.
She 'Survived' Dollywood, Now Panama A face on the new CBS Survivor series when it picks back up next month may be familiar to Dollywood visitors. Melinda Hyder, 32, of Sevierville, Tenn., a performer at the park who has sung with Dolly at some of her appearances in the past, has been selected for the next installment of the reality show, set in Panama, Knoxville TV station WVLT reported here Monday.
Jan. 9: Ministry: Dolly NOT To Sing In June Concert Although a notice posted on the Web site of Neal Family Ministries and a press release published a couple of other places over the weekend had announced that Dolly was among the stars scheduled to perform in "Roger Neal and Friends Sing For MS 2: The Miracle of Christmas," a summer holiday concert, Mr. Neal confirms to Dollymania that Dolly's name was included in error. She has been invited to perform, he said, but her response to that invitation has yet to be received. An earlier report posted here Sunday night based on the release from the ministry had stated she was on the artist roster for the show. Mr. Neal on Monday morning apologized for the confusion which resulted from the error in his ministry's announcement (although as of Monday night he had not corrected his Web site to remove her name), and Dollymania apologizes for passing along that incorrect information. The concert is to take place at 7:30 p.m. June 27 at The Renaissance Center in Dickson, Tenn., about 40 miles west of Nashville. The concert will be taped to air later as a television special and to be released in October as a DVD and CD to raise money to fight multiple sclerosis. Others which the ministry says have signed on include bluegrass star Alison Krauss, gospel legend Dottie Rambo, impressionist Fred Travelena, comedian Mark Lowry and Christian performers The Hoppers, Gerald Crabb, The Perrys and more. Tickets are available at 877-450-9697.
BBC Says 'Happy Birthday, Dolly!' Thanks to Travey and Joe for alerting me to an upcoming U.K. radio special honoring Dolly's birthday. Steel Magnolia: Dolly Parton at 60 will be broadcast on the BBC Radio 2 at 8:30 p.m. British time Tuesday, Jan. 17. Host Nick Barraclough will offer an interview with Dolly on the hour-long program as well as well-wishes from friends including Kenny Rogers, Alison Krauss, Patty Loveless, Brad Paisley, Mindy Smith and Porter Wagoner. The network often posts past programs on its Web site here, which also offers streaming live audio of its programs (which should be at 3:30 p.m. Eastern U.S. time that day).
Returning Down Under After sitting out a week from the top 20 country albums Down Under, Dolly's Those Were The Days re-enters the Australian chart this week at No. 17 for its 12th chart week, it was announced Sunday.
'New Yorker' Notes A couple of Dolly-related projects made The New Yorker's list of 2005's "underappreciated and overlooked pop records." They were Bettye LaVette's I've Got My Own Hell To Raise, with its soulful take on "Little Sparrow," and Brad Paisley's Time Well Wasted, with its hit Dolly duet, "When I Get Where I'm Going," a tune which the publication noted is "lovely." See the full list here.
Kudos For Dolly's Library Dolly's Imagination Library coming to central Indiana this week was lauded in the Indiana Business Journal over the weekend as one of the programs that will help the area's children. Read more here.
Another Compilation Although I have been unable to locate an actual copy to verify it or find any other confirmation of its release, several readers have written in over the past few weeks to alert me that they located a new Dolly compilation at their local Wal-Marts, which may suggest it's a Wal-Mart exclusive. Covered By Dolly is said to feature a dozen of her cover tunes from her years at RCA: "Help," "Harper Valley PTA," "In The Ghetto," "I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch)," "I Walk The Line," "Save The Last Dance For Me," "Higher And Higher," "Great Balls Of Fire," "Games People Play," "Turn, Turn, Turn," "Release Me" and "The House Of The Rising Sun." Thanks to all who have written in!
Awards Reminder Don't forget to tune in to The WB at 8 p.m. Eastern Monday to learn whether Dolly wins the Critics Choice Award for Best Song for "Travelin' Thru!"
Jan. 7: Indiana Plan Gets Coverage Indiana Senate Democrats' proposal to take Dolly's Imagination Library literacy program statewide there using public funding was all over the press Friday. The Connersville News-Examiner took a look here at the successes of the project in Fayette County, while Warrick Publishing offered a story here about the work of the program three other counties complete with a photo of Dolly with one of its leaders there and a child who receives books from it backstage at her recent concert in Evansville, Ind. Additional pieces appeared in The Louisville Courier-Journalhere, Evansville Courier & Presshere and an Associated Press version offered in the Ft. Wayne News Sentinelhere.
Minor Chart Updates After not updating the chart last week due to the holidays, Power Source on Friday posted its new Christian country music top 20, and Dolly's "When I Get Where I'm Going" with Brad Paisley from Time Well Wasted advances one to No. 8 in its eighth week on the chart. The video for the tune debuts this week at No. 16 on the Great American Country top 20 countdown, the cable network announced Friday. (Cast your vote for it in next week's countdown here!) And on the Indie World Country independent labels country singles chart, Dolly's cover of "Both Sides Now" from Those Were The Days gains five to No. 11.
Talkin' It Up In Billboard Dolly's feat of regaining her sole crown as the female artist with the most top 10 singles in history on any chart this week caught the attention of a couple of letter-writers in this week's Billboard "Chart Beat Chat," including one from your webmaster. Read them here (although the column's author makes one small error, confusing Reba McEntire with Barbara Mandrell in one line).
Birthday Wishes Well, there are certain to be several celebrations around the nation in coming weeks recognizing Dolly's 60th birthday, and I've already been notified of the first one. I'm told The Rainbow Room in Detroit is planning a big bash, complete with Dolly impersonators performing a show and a silent auction of several autographed Dolly items to benefit local HIV/AIDS charities. It will be held Saturday, Jan. 14. Dolly turns 60 on Jan. 19. Thanks, Joe!
TV Reminder Don't forget to tune in to The WB on Monday night to see if Dolly lands the Critics Choice Award for Best Song for "Travelin' Thru." The ceremonies to announce the winners is to be broadcast live starting at 8 p.m. Eastern. No word on whether Dolly will attend or not, but most nominees do show up for the awards show.
CD Reminder And don't forget that Tuesday brings the release of the latest Sony BMG Dolly compilation, Love Songs, featuring many of the same songs that have shown up on CD after CD over the years but with the important addition of fan favorite "You Are" to the mix this time. Get your copy here!
Jan. 6: Dolly Returns To 'Billboard' Country Top 10 For the first time in 14-and-a-half years, Dolly is back in the country top 10 singles, as "When I Get Where I'm Going" with Brad Paisley advances three places to No. 8 in its 15th week on the Billboard charts, it was announced Thursday. That feat occurring during the chart week which is the last one dated prior to her 60th birthday celebration on Jan. 19 is noted in the magazine's "Chart Beat" column here this week. On other Jan. 14 edition tallies, the song from Paisley's Time Well Wasted CD dips nine to No. 74 on the all-genre Hot 100 combined sales and airplay chart, gains 10 to No. 49 on the Hot 100 airplay-only chart and dips 11 to No. 99 on the Pop 100 list. Up in Canada, the song regains 14 spots to No. 42 pop, a new peak up north. The tune's U.S. performance gives Dolly back her record for the female artist with the most top 10 country singles, with a total of 55. Earlier this year, Reba McEntire had tied her feat with a 54th top 10, but Dolly once again edges past her to occupy the sole top spot. Even though she hasn't been in the top 10 on the main country songs chart for nearly a decade and a half, she has been in some other top 10s since then, making it to the top 10 for country single sales in 1997 and 2004, top 10 dance single sales in 1997 and top 10 adult contemporary songs last year, when "Baby It's Cold Outside" with Rod Stewart went to No. 2.
Hoosiers Want Dolly's Library Statewide Citing the tremendous success of a public-private partnership in Tennessee to bring Dolly's Imagination Library literacy program to every child statewide, Democratic leaders in Indiana on Thursday unveiled plans to do the same in the Hoosier State. Dolly's program, which provides one free, hardcover, age-appropriate book to every child in a participating community from birth to age 5, is one of five programs offered in the Start Smart education initiative proposed by the Indiana Senate Democrat Caucus. In a press release touting the plan (available here), the group outlined the intent to ask the state to provide $1.5 million in seed money to initiate the program, which is already active in nine counties there with several more launching it later this month under the United Way of Central Indiana. "We know this will make a significant difference in the lives of our youngest citizens," said state Sen. Billie Breaux (D-Indianapolis). "By exposing our children to books and book ownership at an early age, we hope to instill a real love of reading in each of them that will have long term benefits and better prepare them for school." Started in 1996 in her native Sevier County, Tenn., Dolly's program in late 1997 was offered nationwide thanks to a $7 million gift from one of her companies to cover the overhead costs. Since then, it has expanded to more than 530 communities across 41 states, distributing in excess of 2.5 million books a year. Local sponsors pay the $27 per child annual cost for book purchases and postage, and the Dollywood Foundation covers the program's administrative costs from its central office in Tennessee. Using $2 million in state funds, Gov. Phil Bredesen (D-Tenn.) a year and a half ago began offering dollar-for-dollar matching grants for the local costs to counties in his state which wished to implement the program. Indiana's plan, if approved by the state General Assembly and governor, would be similar in nature.
Two More 'Best-Of-Year' Lists With Dolly Dolly made a couple more year's-greatest lists this week, with her CD Those Were The Days coming in at No. 10 for the best albums released in 2005 as judged by D.C.-area GLBT magazine Metro Weekly. The publication said here that Dolly's "heavy-hearted messages of concern are never offered in a heavy-handed way, thanks to the restraint shown in her vocals and musical arrangement." And The Toronto Star on Thursday included her concert there in September among the year's top "roots music" events, saying it displayed "to maximum effect the fine art of song."
Other Chart Developments But her disc doesn't fare so well this week on the Jan. 14 Billboard charts. Those Were The Days inches down four to No. 50 in its 12th week on the country albums chart but it also plummets 28 spots to No. 41 on the independent label albums chart. Up north, Once Upon A Christmas with Kenny Rogers falls out of the top 50 country albums, down from No. 26 in the eighth week of its annual return to the tally in Canada. Martina McBride's Timeless, with Dolly on "I Still Miss Someone," slips two to No. 11 country and drops 23 points to No. 46 pop and comprehensive in its 11th chart week. The CD also loses one to No. 5 country in Canada, where it tumbles 19 to No. 60 pop. Brad Paisley's Time Well Wasted, with its two Dolly numbers, remains steady at No. 17 country but falls 17 to No. 84 pop and 16 to No. 84 comprehensive in its 20th week. His album gains five to No. 24 Canadian country. George Jones's Hits I Missed . . . And One I Didn't, with Dolly duetting on "The Blues Man," inches down five to No. 59 country in its 16th week and falls off the 50-position independent label albums chart, down from No. 21 the previous week. Bettye LaVette's I've Got My Own Hell To Raise, with her version of "Little Sparrow," remains steady at No. 7 in its 14th week on the blues albums chart. Rhonda Vincent's Ragin' Live, with her live take on "Jolene," gains three to No. 8 in its 43rd week on the bluegrass albums chart, while Ralph Stanley's Shine On, with a title track penned by Dolly, falls back off that 15-position list, down from No. 14 the previous week, its 15th on the chart. Selah'sRose Of Bethlehem, with Dolly on "Once Upon A Christmas," falls out of the 50-position holiday music albums chart, down from No. 25 the previous week, its eighth. American Idol winner Carrie Underwood's Some Hearts remains at No. 1 country and No. 5 pop with seventh-week sales of 135,000, while Johnny Cash's The Legend Of Johnny Cash advances one to No. 2 country and inches down one to No. 15 pop in its 10th chart week. The American Idol finalists' cover of the former Dolly and Julio Iglesias duet "When You Tell Me That You Love Me" falls 21 to No. 38 on the pop singles sales chart in its 38th week.
Jan. 5: More Praise For 'Days' Dolly's Those Were The Days makes one more "best of the year" list this week, coming in at No. 6 on critic Eve Doster's selections for 2005's greatest musical releases in Detroit's alternative weekly newspaper, Metro Times. Doster writes here that even Dolly's cheesy outfit on its cover couldn't ruin this collection, which "is not only a ballsy affront to the modern country music world, it is a glorious listen."
Library Update Shelbyville, Tenn., is gearing up to start signing up neighborhood children for Dolly's Imagination Library literacy program, according to the Shelbyville Times-Gazette, which reports here that registration will likely begin in the community in the next couple of weeks.
Recalling A Friend Dolly's remembrances of Goldband Records owner Eddie Schuler lead off a profile in The Independent Weekly in Lafayette, La., on that region's former record mogul, who passed away earlier this year. Take a read here.
Jan. 4: Gone Down Under, Up Across The Pond After 11 weeks on the chart and a peak at No. 3, Dolly's new CD, Those Were The Days, falls out of the 20-position Australian country albums chart this week, down from No. 17 the previous week, it was announced Sunday. However, Dolly's cover of "Imagine" is getting some airplay on the other side of the world, according to the new European CMA charts released over the weekend. The first single from Those Were The Days debuts this week at No. 6 on the top 20 country airplay singles charts in France and is No. 34 for continent-wide airplay. But that's not the only Dolly track making waves. The U.K. country airplay top 20 sees two entries from her: "If I Said You Had A Beautiful Body (Would You Hold It Against Me)" with The Bellamy Brothers from Angels & Outlaws, Vol. 1 entering at No. 16 and "Thank God I'm A Country Boy" with Roy Rivers from his CD Thank God I'm A Country Boy re-entering at No. 17. Her duet with Brad Paisley on "When I Get Where I'm Going" from his Time Well Wasted falls out of the top 20 in Austria and Spain, down from Nos. 5 and 12, respectively.
Sountrack With Dolly Tune Gets Site With Oscar buzz building (nominations come out Jan. 31) around Dolly's song "Travelin' Thru," a couple of minor film festival awards under its belt already and the possibility of winning the Critics Choice Award Monday (airs on The WB) and Golden Globe a week later (airing on NBC), the makers of the film Transamerica have launched a new site dedicated to the original movie soundtrack which contains the Dolly-penned tune. You may listen here to streaming audio of the entire song and hear samples from other tunes on the disc, which hits stores Feb. 7 from Nettwerk Records but is currently available for downloading from iTunes. Reserve your copy of the CD here! (And look for some contest details on getting copies of the soundtrack here soon!)
TV News Canadian viewers are in for a treat next week, as cable channel MuchMoreMusic offers a Dolly-to-Shania episode of its Evolution series. The show chronicles the development of genre-defining artists from the 80s and 90s and compares them with their counterparts from today. The show airs at 11:30 p.m. on Jan. 13.
Library Update Read about the success of Dolly's Imagination Library literacy program's Henderson, Ky., chapter in a story from The Gleanerhere this week. The local Chamber of Commerce sponsors the program there, and about 850 children are participating.
Well Wishes Each year, someone out there in the fan community volunteers to collect well-wishes for Dolly's birthday, and for her big 6-0, Paul over at Ultimate Dolly UK says he is re-vamping his entire site to re-launch on the big day, Jan. 19, and will also feature a special section of birthday wishes from fans. So e-mail yours to him here! Thanks, Paul!
'We're Ba-ack!' Yes, the site has returned after a brief hiatus. Your webmaster decided to take a few days off to celebrate the New Year and headed out of town, but I and your regular updates have now returned! :)