Sept. 28: Holiday Retro Tapes Set, Hallmark Goes To Amazon, Netflix Poster Dolly is truly going back to nostalgia with her upcoming holiday album, A Holly Dolly Christmas. It was announced over the weekend that in addition to the previously-known MP3, CD, and vinyl versions, special edition retro versions will come out Oct. 30 on cassette tape and 8-track tape. This will mark Dolly's first commercial 8-track since 1982 (although club-only versions continued to be released through 1985) and first cassette release since 2002. Although both formats practically ceased production years ago, cassettes, like vinyl, have been making a comeback of sorts the past couple of years with a couple hundred titles released last year (out of the tens of thousands of new albums and reissues released worldwide in other formats) and a much smaller group of 8-tracks, usually just a dozen or so titles, have been coming out in small batches each year. The cassette tape will feature the bonus track "Three Candles" and the 8-track will feature the bonus track "The Wish Book." In related holiday news, Amazon has announced the Hallmark film Christmas At Dollywood will be available for purchase from the streaming service starting Oct. 27, and Netflix released the artwork to promote Dolly's holiday film Christmas On The Square, pictured at left, which it was previously reported here stars Christine Baranski, Jennifer Lewis, and Dolly, was directed and choreographed by Debbie Allen, uses new songs composed by Dolly, and premieres on the streaming service Nov. 22.
Dollywood Shuts Down Lightning Rod For 2020 Dollywood last week put up a sign at its Lightning Rod wooden roller coaster entrance letting attendees know the ride is closed for the remainder of the year. The sign reads: "Lightning Rod is closed for balance of 2020 as it receives an upgrade from its manufacturer Rocky Mountain Construction." It then mysteriously adds: "In 2021, lightning strikes twice." No details have been announced as to what upgrades the ride will offer next year. Likewise, no announcement of any new attractions for 2021 has been made either – Dolly was supposed to unveil a second resort earlier in the year, but that announcement was scrapped due to COVID-19, and with the park's lower attendance this year due to the pandemic it is unknown whether that project will proceed as planned or not. The previous recession postponed her DreamMore Resort for several years.
R&B Singer Gets Dolly Song To Record Celebrity Insider reports here that Dolly has written a new song for R&B singer K. Michelle to use on a new country-inspired album.
Time-Life Half-Hour Infomercial Airs For 'Dolly' Time-Life over the weekend began airing the late-night half-hour infomercial for their upcoming DVD series Dolly: The Ultimate Collection. Although it aired several times over the weekend on various cable channels, the only broadcast I see remaining unaired as of press time Sunday night is 1 a.m. Friday morning on FOX Business Channel, but other airings are likely on other channels over coming weeks. If you missed it, a fan recorded it and posted it to YouTube on Sunday here or in the media player below. Also, Dolly shared to social media a different cut of the three-minute commercial for the product, which you may see here.
Time-Life on Thursday began offering a lower-cost version of their new DVD boxed set Dolly: The Ultimate Collection and also released a commercial for the project, viewable in the media player above or on YouTube here. The abbreviated version of the set features 23 hours of footage on 11 DVDs and costs $100 (as opposed to the longer 35-hour set on 19 DVDs for $200). Missing are eight of the episodes of her 1987-88 variety series, the Live & Well concert, three episodes of The Tonight Show With Johnny Carson, a Lily Tomlin interview, the individual interviews from the Song By Song series, and the previously-released Grand Ole Opry duets DVD and CMA Live DVD. Meanwhile, I understand the original collection is on backorder but is expected to ship the second week of October for those ordering now. I don't know if the original ship estimate of the first week of October will be kept for those who ordered when it was first announced.
Williams-Sonoma Adds Dolly Collection To Site Williams-Sonoma on Thursday morning added Dolly's new home collection items to their website and revealed their prices. Her cookie cutter set is $30, the cookie dough $17, log cabin gingerbread house $130, adult apron $40, and child's apron $25 plus they also unveiled a pot holder and oven mitt set that matches the aprons for $40 and a decorated guitar cookie for $11. Ordered items are expected to be delivered the first week of October.
'Coat' Named To 'Rolling Stone' List Of All-Time Greatest Albums Rolling Stone this week released its updated list of the 500 greatest albums of all time, and Dolly ranks at No. 257 with Coat Of Many Colors, calling it her "starkest, most affecting album." She also shows up as a songwriter on No. 284 Merle Haggard's Down Every Road, 1962-1994 boxed set which features his covers of "In The Good Old Days (When Times Were Bad)" and "Kentucky Gambler," as well as the song he wrote in Dolly's honor, "Always Wanting You."
Margaret Atwood Loves Dolly Handmaid's Tale author Margaret Atwood chatted with Rolling Stone this week and included her love of country music, especially Dolly. Read the interview here.
Sept. 24: Holly Dolly Christmas Collection Coming To Williams-Sonoma
Although Dolly had referenced in a couple of recent interviews that her first project in her new line of branded products that will be coming out over the next few years is a home goods line at Williams-Sonoma, it wasn't until Wednesday that the retailer announced her first pieces: The Holly Dolly Christmas collection, which features a cookie cutter set and sugar cookie dough, an Apron of Many Colors, and a gingerbread log cabin based on her childhood home. The store released a video on the overall line here or in the media player above as well as videos of her holiday memories here, the apron here, cookies here and log cabin here. As of press time Wednesday night, none of the collection was available for sale yet on the store's website. (They do have a spatula and tea towel in stock that she designed for the store's anti-child-hunger campaign.)
Dolly Chats With 'People' Magazine Dolly has a featured interview in this week's People magazine on newsstands Friday, she announced Wednesday on Facebook here. Excerpts from the interview were shared by the publication here and here.
Sept. 23: Dolly Chats With Reba On New Podcast Reba's new Spotify podcast premiered Monday with two episodes, one of which was the one in which she interviewed Dolly about forging her own path. Take a listen to it here.
Netflix Adding 'Here I Am' Documentary Netflix US has announced that last year's BBC documentary Dolly Parton: Here I Am will premiere stateside on the streaming service Oct. 6. The film has been airing overseas on Netflix for a few months, and a slightly different version aired in the U.S. on A&E in April under the title Biography: Dolly.
'Graham Norton' Appearance To Air On BBC America BBC America on Tuesday announced the returning Graham Norton Show will also be coming back to their channel in the States when it returns in-studio next month. Dolly is slated to be among his guests that first night, albeit remotely. The episode will premiere on BBC One at 10:45 p.m. Oct. 2 and repeat on BBC America a week later at 11 p.m. Oct. 9.
'Jesus' Remains At No. 2 Another Week That No. 1 Hot Christian Songs spot continues to elude Dolly and Zach Williams, as their collaboration "There Was Jesus" remains steady yet another week at No. 2 on the tally, the Sept. 26 Billboard charts released Tuesday showed. The track earns a third week at No. 1 each on the Christian Airplay chart and Adult Contemporary Christian Singles chart and a 10th week at No. 1 on the Christian digital song sales chart. It holds steady at No. 4 Christian streaming songs and slips four to No. 37 overall digital single sales.
Sept. 21: Dolly Pays Tribute To RBG Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg died Friday at age 87. The jurist served on the court since 1993. In a tribute posted to her social media outlets such as Facebook, Dolly remembered: "She was small in stature but even the tallest looked up to her. Her voice was soft but her message rang loud and clear and will echo forever. Thank you, RBG. Rest In Peace. Respectfully, Dolly Parton." Response was mostly respectful on Dolly's official Facebook page, but on a FOX News report shared to Facebook, the second-most-used response was the insulting laughter icon and the vast majority of comments were anti-RBG and/or anti-Dolly. May her memory be for a blessing.
Dolly's 'Heartstrings: These Old Bones' Loses Emmy Bid The "These Old Bones" episode of Dolly's Netflix anthology Dolly Parton's Heartstrings lost the Emmy Award Saturday night for Best TV Movie, which went to HBO's Bad Education. Dolly was nominated as executive producer of the film. It marked her third Emmy nomination, the first being for best supporting actress in a variety program for 1978's Cher . . . Special and the second for Best TV Movie for 2016's Dolly Parton's Christmas Of Many Colors: Circle Of Love. She has two regional Emmy Awards, one for lifetime achievement and one for best public benefit program for her wildfires telethon, both from the Midsouth chapter.
Dolly Contributes To Gay Rights Auction Dolly has donated a one-of-a-kind rainbow guitar for LGBTQ advocacy group the Human Rights Campaign's United For Equality fundraiser auction. The opening bid for the shiny instrument will be $2,000. Check out the auction here.
U.K., Aussie Chart Updates After nine weeks back at the top of the charts due to its vinyl re-issue, Very Best Of Dolly Parton Vol. 1 loses one place to No. 2 on the British country compilation albums chart this week, the album's 141st overall, Friday's numbers showed. On the same chart, The Complete Trio Collection Deluxe gains two to No. 5, while Linda Ronstadt's Original Album Series (featuring one Dolly cover and one track with Dolly harmony) rises two to No. 9, Emmylou Harris's Original Album Series: Volume 1 (with two Dolly covers, one track with Dolly harmony and one track with Trio harmony by Dolly and Linda Ronstadt) moves up three to No. 13, Harris's Original Album Series: Volume 2 re-enters the top 20 at No. 19 and Essential Dolly Parton falls back out of the top 20, down from No. 20. Down Under, the "gold series" re-issue of The Very Best Of Dolly Parton (Australian Tour Edition) increases six to No. 10 its 470th chart week on the Australian country albums chart since its original 2007 release.
Actress Impersonates Dolly, Others On 'WAP' Cover Actress and playwright Rachel Harper premiered some impersonations of various singers on Cardi B's "WAP," starting off with Dolly. Warning, language! Watch it here or in the media player below.
Sept. 17: 'Dolly', 'Dolly!', 'Porter' Shows Coming On Time-Life DVDs Time-Life on Wednesday finally revealed the price, details, and shipping date for Dolly: The Ultimate Collection, which is available now for pre-orders here. It will feature over 35 hours of footage across 19 DVDs, cost $200, and is expected to ship the week of Oct. 5. As was predicted here, the set features episodes of all three of her television series, television specials, several talk show appearances, concerts, and classic and new interviews plus a booklet. Unlike most Time-Life collections that come in an abbreviated form and a deluxe edition, it appears the company is only releasing a deluxe edition. The set contains:
16 episodes of her 1987-88 ABC series Dolly (which is the complete series minus six episodes: the one with Ned Beatty, Jackie Harry, Jon Lovitz and Tom Petty; the one with Tom Jones, Lee Majors, and Paul Rodriguez; the one with Rich Little, Randy Travis, Nell Carter, and Tyne Daly; and the on-location episodes of Thanksgiving at Dollywood, Hawaii and New Orleans – there is a highlights bonus feature of the series, so perhaps it will have some clips from the six missing shows. The series has never been available on DVD and hasn't aired anywhere since its original broadcast.)
Six episodes of her 1976-77 syndicated series Dolly! (the episodes featuring the Trio and Kenny Rogers, both of which have previously been available on DVD, plus the episodes featuring The Parton Family, KC and the Sunshine Band, Freddy Fender, and Tom T. Hall, all of which have aired in recent years on the GET TV network)
Seven episodes of The Porter Wagoner Show (Dolly's 1967 debut with guest Bobby Bare, 1970 episodes with Hank Locklin and Billy Edd Wheeler, a 1972 episode with Onie Wheeler, 1973 episodes with The Willis Brothers and Jack Greene, and a 1974 episode with Nat Stuckey – while the episodes air weekly on RFD-TV, only the first episode with Dolly from these selections has previously been available on DVD)
Dolly's previously-released 2009 Live From London concert
Dolly's previously-released 2002 Live & Well concert
10 of her music videos from 2001 to 2020
CMT's Dolly & Friends Making of a Soundtrack special from 2018
Bob Hope's 1988 Christmas special
Seven episodes of The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson (three from 1977 and one each from 1979, 1980, 1987, and 1992)
The entire Song By Song series (plus for the first time the complete interviews from the shows)
One 1987 episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show
Her 2009 commencement address to the University of Tennessee
The 2018 ceremony at the Library of Congress celebrating the 100 millionth Imagination Library book
2019's UK documentary Here I Am
One episode of Celebrities Offstage from 1992
One episode of Music City Tonight from 1995
15 episodes of Crook & Chase from 1986 to 1992
Time-Life's previously-released Opry Video Classics duets DVD featuring two performances with Porter
Time-Life's previously-released CMA Awards Live highlights DVD with performances of "Love Is Like A Butterfly" and "Here You Come Again"
Several old and new interviews with Dolly and others
Dolly Joins Graham Norton On BBC One The BBC announced Wednesday that The Graham Norton Show would be returning to regular broadcasts on Oct. 2 and among his guests for his first night back will be Dolly, who will be appearing remotely. Other guests will be Riz Ahmed remotely and Rupert Everett, Lolly Adefope and Sara Pascoe in studio.
Dolly To Guest On Reba's New Podcast Reba McEntire has announced she and Reba co-star Melissa Peterman are reuniting for a Spotify podcast called Living and Learning with Reba McEntire that premieres Sept. 21 and that Dolly will be one of her first guests. The format has the duo, one expert guest, and one celebrity guest chat about different life challenges, making good decisions and creating happiness around you, Country Fancast reported here.
Dolly's Myrtle Beach Dinner Theatre Re-Opens Myrtle Beach Online this week profiled the local Dolly's Pirates Voyage dinner theatre here, noting when it reopened Sept. 4 it was one of the last dinner theatres in the city to return to operations. It was the last of Dolly's properties to re-open, following her Branson and Pigeon Forge attractions earlier in the summer.
Sept. 16: 'I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus' Released
Dolly on Monday revealed that at midnight she'd be releasing a second surprise single from her upcoming holiday album A Holly Dolly Christmas, and "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus" was made available. Listen to it on YouTube here or in the media player above, or download it here. The full album comes out Oct. 2.
Christie's To Auction Dolly's Opry Dulcimer Christie's auction house on Tuesday announced here that the ACMs will be hosting an online-only charity auction later this fall called Nashville: An Auction to benefit ACM Lifting Lives COVID-19 Response Fund and that Dolly has donated the signature item: the Swarovski crystal-studded four-string dulcimer she used on stage to perform "Jolene" during the taping of her 50th Grand Ole Opry anniversary special last year. Proceeds will help frontline workers of the country music industry from tour bus drivers, techs and venue workers to aspiring musicians out of work during the pandemic shutdown. The instrument is expected to sell at auction for between $50,000 and $100,000. Dolly said in the release: "Seeing my country music community suffer due to the pandemic has broken my heart. It was important to donate the dulcimer that was designed for my 50th Opry Anniversary so we can raise awareness and much needed funds to keep these folks on their feet before we can open the doors to our stages once again."
Library Documentary Moves To Virtual Premiere Local organizers in Dolly's Imagination Library literacy program on Tuesday shared on social media that they have been notified that the program's newest documentary, The Library That Dolly Built, which was cancelled from its New York premiere and national screenings to benefit local chapters of the program in April due to COVID-19, won't be showing in the fall as the original back-up plan had intended. Instead, a Facebook virtual premiere is planned for 7 p.m. Dec. 9 with a live Dolly Q&A to follow plus performance of a song she wrote for the program's local workers.
'Jesus' Stays At No. 2 Hot Christian Songs Chart Dolly and Zach Williams are still awaiting their collaboration "There Was Jesus" getting to the top of the Hot Christian Songs chart, where it stays at No. 2 for another week, the Sept. 19 Billboard lists released Tuesday confirmed. The track earns a second week at No. 1 each on the Christian Airplay chart and Adult Contemporary Christian Singles chart and a ninth week at No. 1 on the Christian digital song sales chart. It holds steady at No. 4 Christian streaming songs and gains five to No. 33 overall digital single sales.
Miley, Fallon Talk About Dolly Dolly's goddaughter Miley Cyrus appeared last week on The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon and the two discussed both appearing on Dolly's upcoming holiday album A Holly Dolly Christmas. They also gushed about what a wonderful artist and person she is, with Miley declaring: "She is just the best living angel on earth." Watch the interview here.
Sept. 10: 'Jesus' Hits No. 1 On Two Christian Charts Although their song still has yet to cross the threshold to the pole position for the overall Hot Christian Singles chart that normally is an "official" No. 1 single for the genre, Dolly and Zach Williams on Wednesday celebrated their collaboration "There Was Jesus" topping two other charts in the genre, advancing one to No. 1 Christian Airplay and No. 1 Adult Contemporary Christian Songs, while it regains one to the No. 1 spot on the Christian digital song sales chart after having dipped to No. 2 for one week granting it an eighth week at No. 1 on that list. The track remains steady at No. 2 on the overall Hot Christian Songs chart and No. 4 Christian streaming songs while slipping three to No. 38 overall digital single sales on the Sept. 12 Billboard charts. The magazine noted her achievement of landing her first No. 1 in the genre with an article here, adding she now is the only artist to top the radio charts in all the Adult Contemporary, Christian, Country and Dance genres.
Comedians Parody Dolly Hits Musical comedians the Holderness family added Dolly to their parody repertoire this week adapting several of her classic songs to the horrors of 2020. Enjoy the medley on Facebook here or in the media player below.
Sept. 8: Barrett Chats With Dolly, Covers 'IWALY'
American Idol alum Gabby Barrett chatted last week remotely with Dolly about life and career as part of the promotion of her Amazon-exclusive cover of "I Will Always Love You." Download the song here and watch the interview here or in the media player above.
Opry Anniversary DVD Released Down Under, Import Friday A DVD of the Dolly: 50 Years At The Opry television special has been released in Australia and Amazon is reporting it will be available in the States as an import on Friday. Order yours here.
U.K., Aussie Chart Updates Across the pond, the vinyl release of Very Best Of Dolly Parton Vol. 1 remains steady at No. 1 atop the British country compilation albums chart for the album's 139th overall chart week, Friday's tallies revealed. It marks the project's eighth week at the pole position since being reissued on vinyl. On the same chart, The Complete Trio Collection Deluxe holds steady at No. 5, while Linda Ronstadt's Original Album Series (featuring one Dolly cover and one track with Dolly harmony) gains two to No. 15, and Emmylou Harris's Original Album Series: Volume 1 (with two Dolly covers, one track with Dolly harmony and one track with Trio harmony by Dolly and Linda Ronstadt) falls five to No. 17. Down Under, the "gold series" re-issue of The Very Best Of Dolly Parton (Australian Tour Edition) regains five to No. 12 its 468th chart week on the Australian country albums chart since its original 2007 release.
Facebook Fan Group Reports DVD Cover Art The Facebook Dolly fan group Dolly Parton Living Legend American Icon on Monday obtained what it reported is the cover art for the Time-Life DVD series Dolly: The Ultimate Collection to be released later this month, pictured below. The project's contents still have yet to be announced.
Sept. 2: 'There Was Jesus' Stays At No. 2
Another interview surfaced this week of Dolly and Zach Williams promoting their hit single "There Was Jesus" as it continues to march toward a possible chart-topper on the Hot Christian Songs chart, where the Sept. 5 Billboard tallies keeps it at No. 2 for yet another week. Watch the interview from The River 104.9 here. Elsewhere on the charts, it slides one to No. 2 Christian digital song sales after seven weeks at No. 1, remains steady at No. 2 Christian airplay and No. 4 Christian streaming while slipping four to No. 35 overall digital single sales.
Time-Life DVD Set Coming This Month Although they remain hush-hush on the contents of the DVD set, Time Life this week confirmed to Dollymania.net that they intend to release their Dolly DVD collection in mid-to-late September, so it is now less than a month away!
UK Radio Network Calls Dolly Best Country Artist Ever UK radio network Smooth Radio recently polled its listeners to vote for the best artists of all time overall and in each major musical genre, and Dolly was named the No. 34 singer of all time and No. 1 for country music, besting No. 2 Kenny Rogers, No. 3 The Eagles, No. 4 Shania Twain and No. 5 Johnny Cash. Read more here.
New Dolly Doc Hitting Streaming Services This Month A new hour-long Dolly documentary, The Dolly Parton Story: From Rags To Riches will be available for purchase from streaming services on Sept. 15. From the trailer, it appears the film is pieced together from stock footage of her over the years. Pre-order it for $10 from Amazon or watch the trailer here.