Jan. 31: 'Shinola' Drops From CMT Tally The music video for Dolly's "Shinola" from Backwoods Barbie has fallen off the weekly countdown on CMT's digital music channel, Pure Country, it was revealed Friday. You may still vote for it in this week's show, though, by visiting here! (A look at some of Dolly's music also made CMT.com's official blog here Friday.)
But Dolly's Up In Ireland News is better across the pond, as The Very Best Of Dolly Parton, Vol. 1 gains 13 spots in its 72nd week on the Irish pop albums chart to come in at No. 75, it was announced Friday.
Lullaby Cover Art Seen The cover art for the upcoming tribute Hushabye Baby: Lullaby Renditions of Dolly Parton, coming out March 24, has been released, imagining Dolly as a chicken. Click on the cover for a larger version. Still no track listing, but you may reserve your copy of the CD here.
Jenkins' Disc Hits U.S. Thanks to Tony for alerting me that Welsh diva Katherine Jenkins has seen her 2005 album Living A Dream released by Decca Records in the U.S. this week. The CD, which has been available for four years as an import from several stores, features her authorized Italian translation of Dolly's "I Will Always Love You," which she performs as an operatic aria under the title "L'Amore Sei Tu." Amazon sells the disc here, but you can also download the track by itself as an MP3 file for 99 cents.
Jan. 30: 'Playlist' Is Gone Again After returning to the chart for a couple of weeks, the compilation disc Playlist: The Very Best Of Dolly Parton is once again gone, the Feb. 7 data from Billboard show. The album falls back off the 75-posiiton country albums chart, down from No. 65 the previous week, its sixth. Meanwhile, Dolly's 16 Biggest Hits slides three to No. 59 country in its 68th week. Jessica Simpson's Do You Know, with Dolly on the title song, inches up one to No. 58 country in its 18th week. Patty Loveless' Sleepless Nights, featuring her cover of Porter & Dolly's "The Pain Of Loving You," rises seven to No. 55 country in its 17th week, while Randy Owen's solo album, One On One, featuring the Dolly-penned track "Holding Everything," re-enters the country list at No. 71 for a 14th chart week. Emmylou Harris' All I Intended To Be, which includes Dolly on "Gold," holds steady at No. 67 country in its 31st week. Brad Paisley's Time Well Wasted, with Dolly on "When I Get Where I'm Going," slips one to No. 5 on the country catalog albums chart and nine on the Canadian country tally to No. 32. Taylor Swift's Fearless holds steady at No. 1 country and pop selling 63,000 copies in its 11th week, while her self-titled debut collection holds on at No. 2 country but drops six to No. 32 pop in its 118th week.
Vote For Dolly In Another Opry Poll Thanks to Maggie for alerting me to another Grand Ole Opry poll this week involving Dolly. Readers are asked which romantic country song gets them ready for Valentine's Day, and Dolly's "I Will Always Love You" was leading the pack at press time Thursday evening at 38 percent, followed by George Strait's "I Cross My Heart" at 19 percent. Other options are "When You Say Nothing At All" by Alison Krauss (13 percent), "Forever And Ever, Amen" by Randy Travis (12 percent), "To Make You Feel My Love" by Garth Brooks (8 percent) and "You Had Me From Hello" by Kenny Chesney (7 percent). Vote here! Thanks in part to your votes, Dolly won the most recent poll, asking whom President Obama should name Secretary of Country Music. At the time the poll link was posted here last week, Dolly was in second place with 30 percent to George Strait's 39 percent, but when it ended, she led with 44 percent to second-place Strait at 31 percent.
Jan. 29: Dance With Dolly Again Dolly let it slip in an interview that 2009 is when she plans to release her long-anticipated dance album, which we now know she intends to call Dance With Me, Darlin'. The news came Wednesday in an interview posted here on the website of Canadian weekly current affairs magazine Maclean's. The story focuses mostly on stars in their 60s who are still going strong. Reports first leaked more than two years ago that Dolly was working on a dance album, and she confirmed in a couple of interviews later in 2007 that her intention was to release the dance CD as her next project following Backwoods Barbie. Although she has mentioned in interviews more recently that she "might even do a dance record," this marks her first concrete statement in over a year that the project is still planned for release.
NPC Tickets Gone Bad news for those hoping to score an invitation to Dolly's Feb. 10 appearance at the National Press Club (NPC) luncheon in Washington, D.C., as the event is sold out, the NPC has announced. Tickets were available only to NPC members and their guests. Dolly last spoke before the group in 2000 to announce the expansion of her Imagination Library literacy program to nationwide. The topic of her upcoming appearance has yet to be announced. Streaming videos of luncheon speeches are posted afterward on the NPC website here, which also sells DVDs and transcripts.
Blog Continues To Post Don't forget to check out the blog here devoted to the development of the upcoming film The Year Dolly Parton Was My Mom, which has been posting new entries each Monday. It's a very good read (and I'm not just saying that because the director said something nice about me in last week's entry!).
Tenn. County Sends 50,000 Books Hawkins County, Tenn., this month sent out its 50,000th book in Dolly's Imagination Library literacy program, according to The Rogersville Reviewhere. It took the chapter four years and five months to reach the milestone.
Stampede Holding Auditions Wanna sing or ride at Dolly's Dixie Stampede in Branson, Mo.? The dinner theatre is holding open auditions Feb. 9 at the venue. Learn more from The Oklahomanhere.
Jan. 28: Reba Reacts To Record Reba McEntire on Tuesday released a statement reacting to the news from last week that she had broken her tie with Dolly for the most top 10 country singles for a female artist, thanks to "Cowgirls Don't Cry" with Brooks & Dunn entering the top 10 to become her 56th top 10 hit. "Dolly is one of my idols and good friends," she said. "To even be mentioned in the same sentence as her is huge to me. To be able to accomplish a 56th Top 10 hit while singing with my buddies, Brooks & Dunn, makes it all so much sweeter." Read notes from Country Weeklyhere and GAC here.
Bid On Autographed Lyrics What a collector's item! "When I Get Where I'm Going" co-writer Rivers Rutherford has donated his handwritten lyrics to the song, which are autographed not only him and co-writer George Teren but the song's singers, Brad Paisley and Dolly, to benefit the Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt University in Nashville. The framed item, with a certificate of authenticity, is up for auction through Feb. 5 at eBay here. As of press time Tuesday night, bids were at $305. The song, from late 2005, became Dolly's most recent No. 1 hit, her 25th, in March 2006, giving her the distinction of being the only performer to top the country charts in each of the past four decades.
More Musical Mojo Wallet Pop marks Dolly's 9 To 5: The Musical as one of its anticipated huge comebacks of 2009, saying here that Dolly's involvement makes the project "pedigreed."
Dollywood Or Bus(t) Dolly's former tour bus, on display at Dollywood and open for tours, gets an overview in a full-page article on the last page of February's Southern Living magazine. Thanks, Jason!
Library Chapter Lauded Dolly's Imagination Library literacy program's White County, Ind., chapter is profiled this week in the Monticello Herald Journal. Take a read here.
Jan. 27: '9 To 5' Earns Another Mention New York Post gossip maven Cindy Adams plugs Dolly's 9 To 5: The Musical in her column Monday with an interview with star Stephanie J. Block, who explains her middle initial, the complicated set of the production and Dolly's hands-on role. Read it here.
More Michigan Library Developments The Battle Creek Examiner in Michigan touts the second anniversary of Dolly's Imagination Library in the nearby Greater Albion community and encourages residents to donate to support it in a story Monday here.
Jan. 26: Fanjoy To Give Fans Joy With Video The director for Dolly's upcoming "Backwoods Barbie" music video was revealed Saturday on Dolly's My Space page. Trey Fanjoy will helm the video. She snagged recent award nominations for directing Taylor Swift's "Teardrops on My Guitar" and "Our Song," Alan Jackson's "Good Time," George Strait's "Seashores of Old Mexico," Miranda Lambert's "Kerosene" and Lee Ann Womack's "I May Hate Myself in the Morning."
Dolly Set Coming Out Again Sony Special Products will soon re-issue its three-CD set that collected Dolly's Columbia albums White Limozeen, Eagle When She Flies and Slow Dancing With The Moon. The re-issued boxed set, called Triple Feature, will hit stores Feb. 10 and will be available in both soft cover and hard cover versions.
Martin Reminder Don't forget that Steve Martin's bluegrass banjo CD The Crow - New Songs for the 5-String Banjo, which features Dolly and Vince Gill singing on the duet "Pretty Flowers," lands as a three-month Amazon exclusive here Tuesday. Over the weekend, The Buffalo News gave the album a three-and-a-half star score, saying that while Martin's lyrics on his self-written songs leave much to be desired, the overall project is "GOOD." Read more here.
Jan. 24: Charity Show Loses One Singer One artist at Dolly's benefit concert in Nashville to help a local music school apparently won't make it, it was revealed Friday. Keith Anderson, who was scheduled to appear at the "Dolly Parton and Friends" fund-raiser on Feb. 2 at Nashville's Wildhorse Saloon, has announced he is cancelling all appearances through February for vocal cord surgery. Read a blurb from GAC here. The concert itself, though, got mentions on Friday from Country Weeklyhere and The Tennesseanhere (which revealed that 25 VIP tickets with stage-front seating, parking and limited backstage access are being offered for $500 each from Debbie Ham at 615-371-8878). In addition to Dolly, the night features Ronnie Dunn of Brooks & Dunn, Kellie Pickler and others. Also, while Ticketmaster shows that the concert starts at 5 p.m., that's actually just the time that the doors open -- the performances don't begin until 7 p.m. General admission tickets, $45 each, are available via Ticketmaster here.
Jan. 23: Reba Bests Dolly Record For the first time in 21 years, Dolly does not hold the record for the most top 10 singles for a female country artist, it was revealed Thursday when Billboard released the Jan. 31 charts which show "Cowgirls Don't Cry" by Brooks & Dunn featuring Reba McEntire enters the top 10 at No. 9 to give her 56 credited top 10 singles to Dolly's 55. Dolly initially captured the record when she tied Loretta Lynn's total of 51 in 1988, taking the record on her own with 52 in 1989. She expanded her lead to 54 by 1991 with "Rockin' Years," a record that stood until 2005, when McEntire tied it by scoring her 54th top 10, "He Gets That From Me." Dolly took the record back on her own in 2006 when the No. 1 "When I Get Where I'm Going" duet with Brad Paisley raised her total to 55, but McEntire tied her once more in 2007 when "Because of You" with Kelly Clarkson went to No. 2. Dolly still holds the record for most No. 1 singles for a female country artist at 25, compared to McEntire's 22. Dolly still performs on more top 10 songs than Reba, though, because she provided uncredited duet harmony on "Put It Off Until Tomorrow" by Bill Phillips in 1966 and Linda Ronstadt's "I Never Will Marry" in 1978 for a total of 57, but since the record labels did not list her name as an artist for the singles, those don't count toward her total. A note about the feat is made in the weekly "Chart Beat" column on Billboard.comhere. Image of Dolly with Reba at the "CMT Giants" concert taping by Frank Micelotta and courtesy CMT. Used with permission. Elsewhere on the charts, Playlist: The Very Best Of Dolly Parton snags a sixth week on the country albums chart, dropping eight to No. 65, while Dolly's 16 Biggest Hits gains two to No. 56 in its 67th week. Jessica Simpson's Do You Know, featuring Dolly on her title track, falls five to No. 59 country in its 17th week and falls out of the top 50 Canadian country albums list, down from No. 46. Patty Loveless' Sleepless Nights, including her cover of Porter & Dolly's "The Pain Of Loving You," re-enters the country albums chart at No. 62 for a 16th week. Emmylou Harris' All I Intended To Be, with Dolly on "Gold," inches down one to No. 67 country in its 30th week. Brad Paisley's Time Well Wasted, feautring Dolly on "When I Get Where I'm Going," gains one to No. 4 on the country catalog albums chart and is up 12 to No. 23 Canadian country. Taylor Swift's Fearless holds steady at No. 1 country and pop selling 63,000 copies in its 10th week, while her self-titled debut collection holds on at to No. 2 country and gains one to No. 26 pop in its 117th week.
Howdy, Madame Secretary Who would make the best "Secretary of Country Music" in the Obama administration, The Grand Ole Opry is asking on its website here. As of press time Thursday night, Dolly is running second in the poll behind George Strait 39 percent to 30 percent. Charlie Daniels is third at 10 percent, followed by Garth Brooks with 9 percent, Martina McBride with 6 percent and Faith Hill, who performed at the first inaugural ball Tuesday, last at 3 percent. Vote for Dolly here! Thanks, Maggie!
Jan. 22: '9 To 5' Scribe's Attorney Sued In the entertainment industry, where success appears likely, there also usually seem to be lawsuits, and Dolly's 9 To 5: The Musical is no exception. It was revealed Wednesday that a trust representing the late writer-director Colin Higgins, who directed and re-wrote Patricia Resnick's screenplay for the original film 9 To 5, has sued his former attorney alleging legal malpractice and breach of fiduciary duty. According to Varietyhere, the lawyer, Barry Hirsch, represented Higgins 30 years ago when he signed the original contract to re-write the screenplay and direct the movie, and his law firm represented Resnick three years ago when she was writing the script for the stage version but did not notify the trust that she was their client. This, the lawsuit claims, constituted a conflict of interest, so they are suing Hirsch for unspecified damages because, they argue, no one secured stage rights from the trust to give permission for the play and consequently the trust received no income from the musical to compensate it for Higgins' contributions to the project as a result of his writing and direction of the original movie upon which it was based. Apparently, no one has suggested any wrongdoing on the part of Dolly or anyone else associated with the musical, just the attorney. Read additional coverage from Playbillhere and The New York Timeshere.
Dolly-bye Coming In March Hushabye Music, which has released several CDs containing lullaby versions of classic country songs, has announced the release date for its project of Dolly tracks: March 24. As was previously reported here, the label will be releasing a CD of lullabies made from Dolly songs. No word yet on a track listing.
Latest 'After Ellen' Praise After Ellen.com has another rave about how great Dolly is in a column posted here Wednesday.
'I'll Take Big Hair For $200, Alex' Dollywood popped up again on Jeopardy Wednesday, I'm told. The $800 clue under the category "Theme Park Fun" was "You'll get wet when you ride Blazing Fury at this theme park named for a country singer." Thanks, Chris!
Jan. 21: Islam Release Slated For Spring Yusuf Islam's new single with Dolly and Paul McCartney should be out this spring, a note on Billboard.comhere suggested Tuesday. The song by the former Cat Stevens, "Boots & Sand," recounts in satirical fashion his 2004 deportation from the United States while on a flight to Nashville to meet with Dolly's producer, Steve Buckingham, and, according to reports, Dolly herself. The song will feature a music video directed by Jesse Dylan, who is Bob Dylan's son. Islam's website in November announced the collaboration and video, stating both should be released in January, but in December the site noted they had been delayed. The Billboard item says the CD will be out "in late spring," which suggests the video and single should be released around the same time. Islam's website has promoted the song as "The ballad of a wandering star who journeyed west and the seven sheriffs that couldn't spell," referring to the government's justification for why he was ejected from the country: because someone with a similar name appeared on the terrorist watch list. Dolly apparently does not appear in the video, since it will reportedly feature Dolly look-a-like Char, who also appeared in Dolly get-up in Toby Keith's "I Love This Bar" music video.
No Dolly At Gospel Event Contrary to rumors that have been circulating recently that Dolly will be in attendance at the Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame ceremony in Nashville next month, an official source confirms to Dollymania that she will not be present. Instead, her sister Stella, a gospel star herself, will accept the honor on her behalf. Dolly will be in Nashville that night, as was reported here Friday, though, performing at a charity benefit at the Wildhorse Saloon which on Tuesday made both CMT.com's blog here and the news page on Dolly's official record label website, DollyPartonMusic.net.
Get '9 To 5' Re-Issue Amazon.com has begun to take advance orders for the March 17 CD re-issue of Dolly's classic 1980 album 9 To 5 And Odd Jobs. Get yours for $13.98 here!
'Insuring' Fun At Dollywood Insurance company Humana has signed on to sponsor events at Dolly's theme park, Dollywood, a piece in a recent issue of Modern Healthcare magazine notes. In the multi-year deal, the company will have its name associated with the Festival of Nations, National Gospel and Harvest Celebration and Smoky Mountain Christmas as presenting sponsor, according to the article, and it will pass out Medicare information and souvenirs but not be allowed to sell actual insurance products at the park. Thanks, Jody!
Jan. 20: Site: Expect Much From Dolly In '09 The current year promises to bring fans lots of Dolly to celebrate, her official record label website, DollyPartonMusic.net, revealed Monday in an e-mail to members of its online fan community, the Dolly-ites. Her current CD, Backwoods Barbie, will be re-issued in a Collectors Edition and a limited edition vinyl release, the announcement noted, and her sold out London concert that was filmed last year will land on both DVD and Blu-Ray later this year under the title LIVE in London with 15 songs and an hour of backstage scenes. The site, which will soon be completely re-designed, will also offer a completely new line of Dolly memorabilia and provide several "flyaway" contests to visit New York for the opening of 9 To 5: The Musical. Also, a blog from Dolly had debuted on the site over the weekend, and they promise it will feature new postings every other week plus an upcoming live session where she'll answer questions in real time.
The World's Most Famous Boobs Dolly was all over the papers and websites on Monday in celebration of her 63rd birthday, but the most interesting observation of the event came from AOL's online men's magazine Asylum, which offered "a pictorial history of Dolly Parton's cleavage," available here.
Ingram: Dolly Duet A Career Highpoint A Dolly collaboration is one of James Ingram's most cherished projects, he tells Christianity Todayhere. Asked for his favorite duets from his career, he replied that he "loved every bit of it" recording the Oscar-nominated "The Day I Fall In Love" for Beethoven's 2nd with her. He also mentioned the title track to Kenny Rogers' What About Me, which he and Kenny recorded with Kim Carnes (that album also features Kenny's cover of Dolly's song "The Stranger").
O'Brien Talks Shop With CSC Check out a great interview with longtime Dolly back-up singer Jennifer O'Brien from Country Stars Central.com posted Monday here. She talks about touring with Dolly, what it's like on the road with her, how she got signed up with her and more. Plus, learn what piece of advice her former employer, George Jones, gave her.
Latest Library Developments What's one of the most positive things that can happen in a city? According to The Middletown Journal in Ohio, it's launching Dolly's Imagination Library literacy program. The project was one of the top "best things" from 2008 that were highlighted here as part of the city's Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration on Monday. And in West Virginia, The Point Pleasant Registerhere posted a series of photos from that city's kick-off of a local chapter of the program there over the weekend.
Jan. 19: HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DOLLY!
'Shinola' Drops Again The music video for Dolly's "Shinola" from Backwoods Barbie managed last week to stay on the countdown on CMT's digital music channel, Pure Country, although it continues to slip toward the bottom of the chart. The song lost one to No. 11 in its 17th week on the Pure 12 Pack countdown Friday. Vote for it in this week's show here!
Producer Wants '9 To 5' Movie Musical The lead producer for Dolly's 9 To 5: The Musical, on Broadway this spring, says he'd like to see the stage production turned into a new movie with the songs, but his television network won't be the one to do it. Showtime president Robert Greenblatt told Knoxville News Sentinel columnist Terry Morrow here that the channel "isn't in the business of doing that right now."
And The Album Comes Back, Too With the Broadway show opening for previews April 7 and the "official" opening April 30, her album containing the title song will also be back in stores, SonyBMG has announced. Her 1980 classic 9 To 5 and Odd Jobs will be re-issued on CD again. It is slated for a March 17 release. No word yet on whether there will be any bonus material included.
British Library Gets Leader The director for the U.K. version of Dolly's Imagination Library early childhood literacy program has been named: Natalie Hunter, a 29-year-old Scot. Read more from Britain's The Daily Recordhere.
'They're Coming To Take Me Away' Your webmaster is going away, for "good" – a "good cause," that is! Duane is being "jailed" next month to support Jerry's Kids though the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Online gifts to Jerry's Kids which will bail me out are being accepted here. Thanks in advance for your support!
Jan. 17: School Benefit Concert Coming Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Central time Saturday for a surprise Feb. 2 Dolly appearance which was announced Friday by Nashville celebrity reporter Brad Schmidt of WKRN here. She will headline a benefit show at the city's Wildhorse Saloon, where she'll perform four songs in a benefit show for the W.O. Smith Nashville Community Music School, according to the report. Others on the roster for the evening, billed as "Dolly Parton and Friends," include Ronnie Dunn of Brooks & Dunn, Kellie Pickler, Keith Anderson and other performers. The 5 p.m. show will feature general admission standing areas with limited seating available for first come/first served. Ticketholders under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Tickets, $45 each, will be available here. Thanks, Beth!
Up Across The Pond A Dolly title gets a 70th week on the Irish charts, it was announced Friday. The Very Best Of Dolly Parton, Vol. 1 gains 10 to No. 89 for the week on the top 100 pop albums list in Ireland.
Interviewer Loves Dolly National Public Radio host Nick Spitzer says his favorite interview out of the more than 400 he's done over the past 10 years on his show American Routes was none other than Dolly. "She was so smart and so funny," he told The New Orleans Times Picayune in a story here. "She went from being this little home girl who loved her community into the big world and the bright lights with a need to tell her story. I was unprepared for how capable and articulate she would be. And she chided me for the way I say 'routes.' She says it 'rowtes.' To her, the way I say it -- 'roots' -- is a hair dye job." An excerpt from her interview is featured in the show's anniversary CD collection recently released and available here.
So Does Thompson Singer/songwriter Teddy Thompson wants to duet with Dolly, he tells The Express & Echo in the U.K. "She's brilliant, one of my all-time heroes," he said here. "She's got a voice that would make you believe in God if you didn't already. If you've ever seen her sing live, it's quite an experience. She's number one in my book. Maybe I could get her to do an Everly Brothers song." Thompson's pal Rufus Wainwright arranged Dolly's "My Blue Tears" for Thompson's country collection, Upfront & Downlow from 2007. His mother, folk legend Linda Thompson, wrote her Trio single "Telling Me Lies."
'DP' Noted Next Thursday's premiere of the show DP: Dolly Parton, Domestic Parnters & Other Female Mysteries in Los Angeles gets a blurb from LA Weekly this week here.
Jan. 16: 'Playlist' Returns To Charts SonyBMG's "Playlist" series must be on deep discount somewhere because several titles in the group show up on the charts this week, including Playlist: The Very Best Of Dolly Parton, which re-enters the country albums chart for a fifth week, tying its previous peak of No. 57, according to the Jan. 24 Billboard tally. Her 16 Biggest Hits rests one spot lower at No. 58, slipping four in its 66th week. Jessica Simpson's Do You Know, with Dolly on the title song, tumbles 20 to No. 54 country in its 16th week and loses 10 on the Canadian country albums list to No. 46. Randy Owen's solo album, One On One, featuring the Dolly-penned track "Holding Everything," and Patty Loveless' Sleepless Nights, which includes her cover of Porter & Dolly's "The Pain Of Loving You," both fall back off the 75-position country albums chart, down from No. 73 in its eight week and No. 70 in its 15th week, respectively. Emmylou Harris' All I Intended To Be, featuring Dolly on "Gold," dips two to No. 66 country in its 29th week. Brad Paisley's Time Well Wasted, including Dolly on "When I Get Where I'm Going," inches up one to No. 5 on the country catalog albums chart and loses four to No. 35 Canadian country. Barry Manilow's The Greatest Songs Of The Eighties, featuring his and Reba's cover of "Islands In The Stream," falls off the top 200 pop albums chart, down from No. 193 pop in its sixth week. Taylor Swift's Fearless holds steady at No. 1 country and pop selling 72,000 copies in its ninth week, while her self-titled debut collection gains one to No. 2 country and nine to No. 27 pop in its 116th week.
'Scene' Honors 'Barbie' Country music's reviewers have selected Dolly's Backwoods Barbie as the 18th best country album of 2008 in the ninth annual critics' poll published by Nashville Scene. Two other CDs with Dolly connections made the top 20: No. 5's Sleepless Nights by Patty Loveless with a cover of "The Pain Of Loving You" and Emmylou Harris' All I Intended To Be, with a Dolly guest vocal, at No. 17. The critics also named Dolly No. 7 in last year's best country songwriters list. See the complete results here.
'Dolly Mom' Movie Blog Launches Fans have searched for months for details on the upcoming movie The Year Dolly Parton Was My Mom, finding very little. Well, Tara Johns, the writer/director behind the project has launched a blog to document its progress, and she promises lots of information will be forthcoming. Keep up-to-date by visiting the blog here. I'm told it presently is offering weekly updates each Monday but may soon increase the frequency of postings. The movie apparently garnered Dolly's blessing, as producers wanted to use not only her name in the title but also have her image and music placed throughout the picture and get her to perform in it as well. Did they succeed? Well, her name is still on the movie, so we'll have to keep checking the blog for the latest details!
Mary Remembers Dolly Mary Chapin Carpenter thinks music on TV is the second-best thing to hearing it performed live, according to a column she wrote this week for The Washington Times, and one of her most vivid TV memories was being enthralled by Dolly on her original 1976-77 half-hour variety series. Read the full item here.
Dolly Signs On To Facebook Dolly is on Facebook. A posting on her official record label website, DollyPartonMusic.net, announced the launch of the page, which you may access here.
Park Store Open For Business If you're heading through East Tennessee, you can still shop at Dollywood even though the park is closed for the season until late March. The park's Emporium shop is open Wednesday through Sunday each week from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m.
Mo Rocca Or John F. Kennedy? Dolly Parton or Abraham Lincoln? That's a non sequitur query Mo Rocca once posed to people on the street once on his radio show which was asked of him at a Kentucky appearance according to Kentucky.comhere.
Mich. Library Hopes For $2 Million Bay and Arenac Counties, Mich., are raising a $2 million endowment to provide permanent support for their local chapter of Dolly's Imagination Library, according to a story here from The Bay City Times.
Jan. 13: Dolly Tunes 'Cumming' And Going Listen for some Dolly tunes during actor Alan Cumming's performance Feb. 7 as part of the "American Songbook" series at Lincoln Center in New York. He hasn't said what song he'll be singing in his two sets, just that Dolly will be among the composers. Check out more on the series from The New York Posthere.
LA Gets Dolly-Inspired Show And on the other side of the continent, Bang Studio on North Fairfax Avenue in Los Angeles features two performances of "DP": Dolly Parton, Domestic Partners & Other Female Mysteries by Amy Turner, directed by David Sussman. In the show, Turner visits her idol's theme park in the search for enlightenment. It plays at 8 p.m. Jan. 22 and 29. Tickets are $10 each.
Library News Tennessee's Imagination Library has a new champion. Lady Bird, who has run the statewide Governor's Books from Birth Foundation since its inception, is retiring and turning the reigns over to Jeff Conyers, formerly travel coordinator for Gov. Phil Bredesen (D-Tenn.). Using state funding, Bredesen established the foundation to provide matching dollars to any community in the state that adopts Dolly's early childhood literacy program, which now reaches more than half of children of eligible age in the state. Read a note about the appointment from The Nashville Business Journalhere. And in Point Pleasant, W.V., the community's local chapter kicks off this weekend at the National Guard Armory. Read more from The Point Pleasant Registerhere.
Jan. 12: Dolly Duets On 'Applejack' There's a new version of Dolly's classic "Applejack" heading to stores. Pam Gadd, who spent the past several years as Porter Wagoner's duet partner, on Jan. 20 releases her bluegrass CD Benefit of Doubt, which features a duet with Dolly on the tune. The album also includes a duet with Marty Raybon on "After The Fire" and her new song "Farewell Wagon Master," a tribute to Porter. Reserve your copy here.
Slipping On CMT Dolly's music video for "Shinola" from Backwoods Barbie on Friday earned its 16th week on the Pure 12 Pack countdown on CMT's digital music channel, Pure Country. The video dropped four to No. 10. Cast your ballot for this week's show here!
Interview On Public Radio CD There's another Dolly appearance on CD that came out a few months back, but this one is interview-based. She's among the musicians featured on a two-disc collection of interviews and music from the public radio series American Routes in the release American Routes: Songs and Stories From the Road. Others on the show include Dave Brubeck, Tom Waits and Jerry Garcia. Order your copy here!
'9 To 5' Makes Paper's Column The April 7 preview opening of Dolly's 9 To 5: The Musical was the top story in Sunday's celebrities column of The Tennessean on Sunday, quoting her video message from the show's official website promoting the production (although, like CMT.com's note about it here a few days ago, it mistakenly refers to the show's official website as Dolly's site). Read the full item here. In related news, Nashville celebrities reporter Brad Schmidt says here a scheduling conflict due to Dolly's commitments to the show will require she miss out on her induction into the Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame next month.
Paper: 'IWALY' Coming From JT A gossip column in British newspaper The Sun reports that Justin Timberlake plans to record a new duet of Dolly's "I Will Always Love You" in coming months with Leona Lewis, last year's winner of American Idol judge Simon Crowell's U.K. television talent competition X Factor. Read more here
Park Opens Fewer Days In '09 Cutting personnel costs in the current economic downturn contributed to Dollywood's decision to trim its 2009 season compared to last season, according to The Knoxville News Sentinelhere. The park opens a few days later this year and closes a few days earlier. A park spokesperson added that holidays, spring break and average attendance also factor into the annual decision of when to operate the park for the year. Executive leadership took a voluntary pay cut for the year, and to help reduce expenses other salaried staff will not see raises. Last year's park attendance was 7 or 8 percent down from 2007 but still ranked as its third-highest in history, the article noted.
Thanks Be To Dolly British band The Bluebells credit Dolly with giving them a No. 1 hit back in 1993, according to The Times. In the story, the band recalls that their No. 8 song "Young At Heart" from 1984 was re-released nearly a decade later and was about to peter out on the charts when it got picked up for a Volkswagen commercial and earned some newfound popularity. Turns out the reason the song got in was because the ad agency was unable to work out a deal with Dolly's representatives to use one of her recordings of "I Will Always Love You." Read more here.
Jan. 10: One Dolly Track On GAC Ballot Dolly has snagged one spot for fans to vote for a video of hers in Great American Country's (GAC) top 20 love songs countdown. Her "Real Love" duet with Kenny Rogers is among the choices on the ballot. Vote for her and your other favorites here! Thanks, Maggie!
NYC Cinema Loves Dolly If you're in New York's Chelsea neighborhood, you'll want to get your Dolly big screen on at the Clearview cinema. The facility's campy Thursday classic film series will highlight two Dolly projects this month: The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas at 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Thursday of next week and 9 To 5 at 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Jan. 29.
Dolly Through The Years In celebration of Thursday's announcement that she will be inducted into the Gospel Music Association Foundation Hall of Fame, Dolly's career-spanning photo section has been re-posted on the website of The Tennessean and is promoted on its front page. Check it out here.
Another Version Of 'Coat' Available Gina Sicilia, who won the 2008 Best New Artist Award from the Blues Music Awards, a few months back released a new CD, Hey Sugar, which features a country blues take on Dolly's classic "Coat Of Many Colors." Listen to a sample and purchase the CD here!
Whitney Gets No Respect Whitney Houston's vocal acrobatics have snagged her cover of Dolly's "I Will Always Love You" on the list of the worst songs of all times published by The Standard newspaper in Australia. Read more here.
Jan. 9: Pearl Tribute On 'America' CD You may recall it reported here in November that Dolly had recorded a new song called "A Bridge Across" with Mark O'Connor and written by Tom McBryde and Lynn Willbanks in honor of slain journalist Daniel Pearl. The track has now been released as part of a three-CD collection chronicling 500 years of American history as told through narratives and songs. This Is My America features 56 songwriters and performers, including Kathy Mattea, Charlie Pride, Billy Dean, Beth Nielsen Chapman and the Nashville Symphony, which performs with Dolly and O'Connor. Dolly also provides the narrative introducing the song and its subject. The set is available for $49.95 with free shipping here.
Martin Disc Hits Jan. 27 Steve Martin's bluegrass album, The Crow - New Songs for the 5-String Banjo, will be released Jan. 27 as an Amazon.com exclusive. As was previously reported, Dolly and Vince Gill perform the duet "Pretty Flowers" on the 15-song collection, available for pre-order here.
'Christmas' Gone Up North The holidays are really over, as Dolly's Once Upon A Christmas album with Kenny Rogers drops off the top 50 Canadian country albums this week. The CD, from 1984, fell from No. 33 last week, its seventh of the current season. Stateside, her 16 Biggest Hits gains five to No. 54 country in its 65th week, the Jan. 17 Billboard numbers confirmed. The magazine also reported the data on three more of her Backwoods Barbie World Tour dates: Nov. 7 in Reading, Pa., grossed $116,000 with 44 percent of the Sovereign Center's 4,915 available seats sold; Nov. 6 in Raleigh, N.C., took in $154,270 with 53 percent of the RBC Center's 4,989 tickets sold; and the Oct. 26 date in Louisville brought $162,000 with 72 percent of the 2,587 seats filled. Jessica Simpson's Do You Know, featuring Dolly on the title song, rises seven to No. 34 country in its 15th week and re-enters the Canadian top 50 country albums at No. 36. Randy Owen's solo album, One On One, with the Dolly-penned track "Holding Everything," re-enters the 75-position country albums chart, at No. 73 in its eighth week, while Patty Loveless' Sleepless Nights, with her cover of Porter & Dolly's "The Pain Of Loving You," also re-enters at No. 70 country in its 15th week. Emmylou Harris' All I Intended To Be, including Dolly on "Gold," increases three to No. 64 country in its 28th week. Brad Paisley's Time Well Wasted, with Dolly on "When I Get Where I'm Going," slips three to No. 6 on the country catalog albums chart and inches up one to No. 31 Canadian country. Barry Manilow's The Greatest Songs Of The Eighties, with his and Reba's cover of "Islands In The Stream," drops 72 places to No. 193 pop in its sixth week. Taylor Swift's Fearless holds steady at No. 1 country and pop selling 90,000 copies in its eighth week, while NBC Sounds Of The Season: The Julianne Hough Holiday Collection shoots up 14 spots to No. 2 country in its 11th week, gaining 58 to No. 24 pop.
Faithfull Rendition Noticed Marianne Faithfill's new CD, Easy Come, Easy Go, with its cover of "Down From Dover," gets a very positive review from Pitchfork Mediahere this week. The critic says the song "devastates" and Faithfull makes it sound as if an older woman is recalling the story rather than the innocence that Dolly's original performance brought to the song.
Sedaris Gets Clothes Genius comedienne Amy Sedaris stole herself a costumer from the scene of Dolly's "Better Get To Livin'" music video, Knoxville News Sentinel blogger Terry Morrow notes in his column here. She liked her clothes from the shoot so much that she hired the costumer.
Dollywood Performer Call Wanna perform at Dollywood? The park's 2009 audition dates have been announced. Entertainment auditions will be held Jan. 31 and Feb. 1 at the park in Pigeon Forge, Feb. 6-9 at the Unified Professional Theatre Auditions at Playhouse on the Square in Memphis and March 4-9 at the Southeastern Theatre Conference at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex in Birmingham, Ala. Get more information here.
Gospel Hall Of Fame Taps Dolly The Gospel Music Association (GMA) Foundation on Wednesday announced Dolly among its 2009 Hall of Fame inductees. The other artists being recognized are Michael W. Smith, Dr. Bobby Jones and The Dixie Hummingbirds. In a press release available here, GMAF CEO John W. Styll stated: "This year's class of GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame inductees have all achieved great professional and personal success in many different areas of the music and entertainment industries, but each shares a common heritage of the Gospel's powerful impact on their lives." The release reviews Dolly's iconic career in music, publishing, acting and philanthropy but also notes her beginnings as the granddaughter of a fiddling preacher to her use of Christian-themed music in her albums, also mentioning Dollywood's showcasing of gospel music. Stories about the announcement made The Tennesseanhere and Gospel Music Updatehere. No word on whether Dolly will be in attendance at the induction ceremony, which will take place at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 2 at The Richland Country Club in Nashville. Tickets are $150 and available from 615-277-1366 through Jan. 23.
Site: New Music Video Coming Dolly's record label website, DollyPartonMusic.net, on Wednesday revealed that a music video will be shot for the next single from her CD Backwoods Barbie, the title song. It has previously been announced that the track would serve as the fourth single from the collection, timed for spring 2009 to coincide with the Broadway opening of 9 To 5: The Musical, since it also appears in the stage show. The site also announced that Dolly will be involved in "MAJOR TV exposure and press events" in early 2009.
FOX Chief Didn't Like 'Idol' The head of the FOX television network doesn't think it was a good idea to have Dolly on his channel's American Idol last season. CEO Tony Vinciquerra said at a conference Wednesday that the 2008 season was boring. He complained that none of the year's contestants had any "personality" and that the three mentoring guests were wrong choices. He called Dolly "a wonderful performer, but not what you want in developing the 18-49 audience," derided Neil Diamond as "not the person you would want to be bringing in very young consumers, which is the audience for the show," and slammed musical theatre legend Andrew Lloyd Webber as someone from Broadway "no one has ever heard of." Read more from Reuters here. Dolly's two appearances on the program from last season repeat on FOX Reality Channel at 8 p.m. Friday.
Sunshine State Libraries Abound A couple of Florida papers this week are highlighting efforts of Dolly's Imagination Library early childhood literacy program in their pages. First Coast News plugs the project in St. Johns and Putnam Counties here, and The Pensacola News Journal reviews Escambia County's chapter here.
Jan. 6: Romijn Births A Dolly Actress Rebecca Romijn, who strolled the paths at Dollywood while very, very pregnant with twins a few months ago (but I can attest she looked gorgeous in her purple designer dress), gave birth Dec. 28 to the two girls with hubby Jerry O'Connell. People magazine was the first on Monday to break the news and confirm here that the girls are named Dolly Rebecca Rose and Charlie Tamara Tulip. Romijn said when she visited the park (taking in a Dolly concert and even getting to meet her) that she planned to name one of the babies after her, adding: "I have been a Dolly fan all of my life. She's a wonderful woman. I really connect with her music. I can't think of a better role model for my children."
What's On Tap In 2009? No hints of what the big news will be, but Dolly's MySpace page here promises that the first quarter of the new year will bring "some major announcements . . . that will blow fans and critics alike away!"
Dolly Flick Hits Seattle Seattle fans got a bit of a treat with a big screen showing of Rhinestone at Central Cinema Monday night, according to the city's The Strangerhere.
Dollywood City Gets Nod Readers of Southern Living magazine have named Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg, where Dollywood and Dolly's Dixie Stampede are located, the No. 1 "Best Weekend Getaway" and No. 5 "Best Family Destination" in the South, The Chattanoogan noted here.
Latest Library Expansion Another community is gearing up to offer its children Dolly's Imagination Library literacy program, The Courier News in suburban Chicago reports. The Elgin, Ill., area has signed on for the program. Read more here.
Jan. 5: 'Shinola' Sticks Around On CMT Well, Dolly manages to hold on for a 15th week on the Pure 12 Pack countdown on CMT's digital music channel, Pure Country. The music video for "Shinola" from her Backwoods Barbie remains steady at No. 6. Vote for it on this week's show here!
Contestant Comment One Miss America contestant has aid something worth supporting. Asked who her favorite musician is, Miss Kentucky Emily Cox answered Faith Hill, but she added: "Dolly Parton is my hero!" Read some other contestants' responses from the blog Examiner.comhere.
More Broadway Attention The New York Daily News has singled out Dolly's 9 To 5: The Musical as one of the five upcoming Broadway shows to see in 2009, noting that "if her new songs have half as much heart and good humor as Dolly does, it's halfway home." See the full article here.
Jan. 3: HAPPY NEW YEAR!
'Christmas' Still Selling Up North Once Upon A Christmas by Kenny Rogers and Dolly may be gone from the charts stateside, but the 1984 classic collection remains a strong seller in Canada, the new charts released this week revealed. The CD slipped 17 places but remained in the top 50 Canadian country tally, coming in at No. 33 in its seventh week on the charts up there for the current winter. In the U.S., her 16 Biggest Hits holds steady at No. 59 country in its 64th week, the Jan. 10 Billboard numbers showed. Jessica Simpson's Do You Know, with Dolly on her title track, gains nine to No. 41 country in its 14th week. Randy Owen's solo CD, One On One, which includes the Dolly-penned selection "Holding Everything," falls off the 75-position country albums chart, down from No. 72 the previous week, its seventh. Emmylou Harris' All I Intended To Be, featuring Dolly on "Gold," falls four to No. 67 country in its 27th week. Brad Paisley's Time Well Wasted, with Dolly on "When I Get Where I'm Going," gains three to No. 3 on the country catalog albums chart and rises nine to No. 32 Canadian country. Barry Manilow's The Greatest Songs Of The Eighties, with his and Reba's cover of "Islands In The Stream," plummets 37 to No. 121 pop in its fifth week. Taylor Swift gets the two top country spots, with her current album, Fearless holding steady at No. 1 country and pop in its seventh week, while her self-titled debut gains two to No. 2 country and slips one to No. 26 pop in its 114th chart week.
Another Paper: Dolly Among Year's Best Another newspaper has placed a Dolly stop on her Backwoods Barbie World Tour among the year's best shows in town. This time, the ranking comes from The Pittsburgh Post Gazette, which lists her April 22 performance in the city here as the third-best country concert of 2008.
'Playbill' Looking Forward To '9 To 5' Playbill told readers this week to be on the lookout for Dolly's 9 To 5: The Musical, opening later this year on Broadway, profiling it in a story on "diva-filled" shows coming up there and noting "there are high hopes that the workplace comedy, which arrives at the Marquis April 7, will be the blockbuster it should be." Read more here.
Guide To Dolly CDs Thanks to Sheldon for alerting me to a newly-posted buyers' guide for new Dolly fans. Check it out from Country Universehere.