June 28: Rock Singles Debut On Digital Sales Charts
Dolly's second and third rock singles made the digital sales charts this week, the July 1 Billboard tallies released Tuesday revealed, but they did not do as well as her first rock single. "Bygones" with Rob Halford of Judas Priest and Motley Crue's Nikki Sixx and John 5 debuts at No. 19 Hard Rock Digital Song Sales while "Magic Man" with Heart's Ann Wilson and Howard Leese debuts at No. 25 Rock Digital Song Sales. Her November Rockstar album's first single, "World On Fire," hit No. 1 on the Rock Digital Song Sales chart. None of the three songs earned enough airplay or streams to allow them to appear on any of Billboard's main charts, all of which combine sales, streams, and airplay. Dolly's Run, Rose, Run slips one to No. 7 bluegrass albums in its 104th chart week. In related news, with Morgan Wallen and Luke Combs at No. 1 and No. 2 on the Hot 100 pop singles chart, observers noted that is the first time two country performers held the top two positions of the tally since Dolly and Eddie Rabbit did it back in 1981, some 42 years ago. Listen to "Bygones" on YouTube here or in the media player above, and listen to "Magic Man" on YouTube here or in the media player below, and download each track from Amazon here!
Dolly Going Wonka For Library's 200 Millionth
Dolly's Imagination Library in April passed 200 million books distributed free to children, and on Tuesday they announced the milestone will be celebrated with Dolly's own version of Willie Wonka's Golden Ticket by way of a special bookmark. Seven randomly-selected books out of the millions that will be mailed to children in the program in September across five countries will contain a special Dolly bookmark. The families that receive the bookmark will receive four prizes: a video chat with Dolly, a personalized signed letter from Dolly, an autographed photo from Dolly, and four tickets to visit Dollywood. In addition, their local affiliate of the program will receive $2,000. Children enrolled in the program by July 31 who receive a book in September will be eligible. In a press release, Dolly noted: "I know there are children in communities around the world with big dreams and the seeds of these dreams are often found in books. It's been one of my greatest gifts in life to help instill a love of reading through my Imagination Library. Reaching 200 million books worldwide is a major milestone that I'm so very proud of, and I want to thank all of our local program partners, funders and supporters from the bottom of my heart. But we're just getting warmed up, we have so much more to do! Together, we can inspire even more children to dream more, learn more, care more and be more." Watch Dolly announce the contest here or in the media player above.
VMP Profiles 'Dollymania,' Superfans Thanks to Vinyl Me Please's Vinyl Me Parton subscription service for profiling your webmaster and the website in an article examining some of Dolly's "superfans." Read it here.
Elton Beats Dolly's Glastonbury Ratings Record Elton John's final concert of his farewell U.K. tour took place Sunday at the Glastonbury Festival, and organizers said he may have just exceeded Dolly's record for the largest crowd ever in the festival's nearly 50 years. TV ratings, however, blew Dolly's previous record out of the water. Her 2014 slot was that year's most-watched non-sports broadcast with 2.6 million viewers or 13.4 percent of all televisions on during that hour in the U.K. John's performance drew 7 million viewers and nearly half of all televisions on at that hour in the country. His tour was supposed to be over now, but it has six final dates throughout other European countries over the next week or two to make-up for cancelled shows earlier in the tour.
Journalist Wins For Dolly Story Nashville-based writer Holly Gleason was recently awarded the Entertainment Journalist of the Year award at the LA Press Club's Southern California Journalism Awards, also taking home first place in Entertainment News (Magazine) for her Pollstar cover story on Dolly and why she belongs in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, which included the first-published announcement that she was retiring from touring (which was first reported here on Dollymania a couple of days before the story was picked up by the mainstream press).
June 26: TV: Dolly Doing Two Shows In Mississippi Dolly will be performing two shows during her Aug. 26 fundraising engagement at Philadelphia, Miss., venue the Ellis Theater, Jackson news station WLBT reported here last week, meaning just over 1,000 tickets should be available for the 516-seat theater. And the Congress of Country Music, Marty Stuart's museum of country music history he is building in Philadelphia to exhibit his 20,000-piece collection of historic memorabilia which the concert is helping to fund along with Dolly's Imagination Library, on Saturday posted a countdown clock showing either two or three minutes to midnight to indicate the upcoming announcement of ticket information for the shows. The time could be simply symbolic that the announcement is near or it could mean two or three days on a countdown, which could translate to an announcement Monday or Tuesday. The Congress has said in response to questions on its Facebook posts that it will reveal the ticket sales date just a few days before tickets actually go on sale. In the WLBT story, Stuart said: "Dolly understands when people are trying to get things up and running. She understands the importance of what's happening in Neshoba County. It wasn't hard at all. I went and laid it out for her and she says, 'Well, I don't tour anymore, but I better come and do this.'"
Inside Museum Demolition, New Resort Reservations Thanks to John Osborne for some exclusive photographs showing some of the interior demolition to Dolly's Chasing Rainbows Museum at Dollywood being done to redesign it for re-opening in 2024 as an immersive storytelling experience inspired by the Van Gogh exhibit that is currently traveling the United States. Check out the behind-the-scenes look here. In other news, Dollywood announced last week that bookings for its new HeartSong Lodge and Resort will begin to be accepted on Monday for lodging beginning Nov. 3 here. Room pricing appears similar to the existing DreamMore Resort and Spa but the hotel will be themed as a more rustic wooded lodge.
Latest Developments On 'Rockstar' Album Dolly's publicist last week issued a press release touting that her new single "Bygones" with Rob Halford, Nikki Sixx, and John 5 debuts at No. 1 on the Mediabase Classic Rock Songs chart. In the release, Dolly reacted: "I am so excited to see the response 'Bygones' is receiving! To debut at #1 on the Rock charts is such a thrill for me, and it makes it even sweeter to share this with Rob, Nikki, and John 5," says Parton. "I also have to recognize my coproducer on the album and cowriter on this song, Kent Wells, who helped me bring this song to life. I am a happy girl today!" The release added that Dolly will travel to London this week to promote the Rockstar album in a European media blitz. The press release was republished by dozens of media outlets. Dollymania could not confirm its claim. Most Mediabase charts are not available to the general public, but some searching did uncover that Dolly's track was No. 1 on the publication's Hot/Mod/AC Cool New Music chart and Triple A Cool New Music chart, which appear to be staff picks for the best tracks of the week for stations in the genre to add to their rotation rather than any reflection of actual adds or purchases. The song hasn't appeared on Billboard charts yet since the ones to be released this coming Tuesday will reflect the first week of sales, streams, and broadcasts since the two most recent singles from the project were released. Meanwhile, Forbes magazine notes that while the full album won't be eligible for consideration at the 2024 Grammy Awards due to the Sept. 15 cut-off for eligibility, any singles released before then will be eligible for Grammy consideration in the rock categories. See what they had to say here.
Dolly Among Best Album Covers Taste Of Country last week ranked its critics' choices for the 60 best country music album covers of all time and Dolly landed three on the list here: Coat Of Many Colors at No. 47, Jolene at No. 39, and Here You Come Again at No. 28.
Over 1,000 Dollys Try For World Record Residents in one Irish town brought together more than 1,000 Dolly look-a-likes in an attempt to set a world record for the most Dolly look-a-likes, which was done as a cancer fundraiser (for which Dolly donated a trip to Dollywood and the park's president visited Ireland to present in person). Since no current record exists, the town needed to get at least 250 participants for the Guinness World Record folks to consider whether to accept it as an official record. The Guinness evaluators should announce within eight to 12 weeks whether they have accepted the record. See more from The Irish Sunhere and hear an interview the park's president did while in town with Today FM here.
Clarkson Divorced Seconds Before Performance Kelly Clarkson recently told Andy Cohen during a SiriusXM Town Hall segment that she received the text that her divorce was final moments before going on stage to sing "I Will Always Love You" in tribute to Dolly, making such a song much harder to perform.
U.S., U.K. Chart Update Dolly's Run, Rose, Run gains four this week to No. 6 bluegrass albums in its 103rd chart week, the June 24 Billboard numbers released Tuesday showed. Overseas, the U.K. charts on Friday kept Dolly's Diamonds & Rhinestones, The Greatest Hits Collection atop the British county compilation albums chart, logging a 22nd nonconsecutive week at No. 1 in its 30th week on the chart, her The Monument Singles Collection re-enters the top 20 to hit No. 14 for a sixth week, The Complete Trio Collection Deluxe falls out of the top 20, down from No. 18, Emmylou Harris' Original Album Series: Volume 2 (featuring one track with Dolly harmony and two tracks with Trio harmony by Dolly and Linda Ronstadt) tumbles eight to No. 19, Very Best Of Dolly Parton Vol. 1 falls back off the top 20, down from No. 13, Linda Ronstadt's Original Album Series (featuring one Dolly duet and one Dolly cover) loses one to No. 15, and Harris'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) re-enters the top 20 at No. 17.
June 19: Two More Rock Singles Released
As was predicted here a week in advance, Dolly on Friday released "Magic Man (Carl Version)" with Ann Wilson and Howard Leese from Heart and her original composition "Bygones" with Rob Halford featuring Motley Crue's Nikki Sixx and John 5 as the next singles from her November album Rockstar. In a press release, Dolly said: "'Bygones' is an original song of mine featuring Rob Halford from Judas Priest with Nikki Sixx and John 5. It is one of my very favorites on the whole album. The song fits with so many couples and coupling my voice with Rob, one of my all-time favorites, made it even more special." She added: "I've always wanted a reason to sing 'Magic Man' by Heart and it was one of my first choices for the album. I was so happy that Ann Wilson agreed to sing it with me. Nobody can out sing Ann, but I gave it my darndest, and we added a few lines that were not in the original. We wanted to have a few things that made it seem like ours. Thank you, Nancy, for letting me fill in for you on this. Hope I've made you both proud. I think it's magic!" Listen to "Bygones" on YouTube here or in the media player above, and listen to "Magic Man" on YouTube here or in the media player below, and download each track from Amazon here!
Dolly Submitted Two Songs For Emmy Noms In addition to entering her holiday special in the Best TV Movie category, which she won last year, Dolly has submitted at least two songs for consideration for Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics at next year's Emmy Awards, nomination voting for which begins in a week. Yahoo reports here that she has entered pieces from both NBC's Dolly Parton's Mountain Magic Christmas and HBO's Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. In the first, all of the music had been previously released or were existing songs covered for the special, so the likely only qualified song to enter was "Be That," a new number that premiered in the film. In the latter, she performed the new original song "Rockin'," so that would be the one entered from that program. Nominees will be announced July 12,
Still No Ticket News For Mississippi Organizers for Dolly's Aug. 26 concert in Philadelphia, Miss., continue to warn potential ticket buyers to ignore social media rumors of ticket sale dates and prices, noting that ticket prices and the on-sale date are both still being negotiated with Dolly's team, as the show will serve as a benefit fundraiser for both her Imagination Library early childhood literacy program and Marty Stuart's Congress of Country Music museum of country music history memorabilia in Philadelphia. Fans were asked to continue watching the Congress's website and Facebook page for the ticket announcement soon.
Get Dolly's New 'READ' Poster The American Library Association has started selling Dolly's new "READ" poster they debuted when they announced her lifetime membership honor a few weeks ago. You may order it for $18 here.
In Memoriam: Treat Williams Treat Williams, who came to stardom as the lead in the film adaptation of the musical Hair, was killed June 12 in a motorcycle accident at age 71. One of his final roles two years ago was the male lead in the Emmy-winning Dolly Parton's Christmas On The Square. The connection led Dolly to posting a remembrance on social media last week: "I was very sad to hear that Treat Williams had passed away. I've always been a fan and I had the wonderful opportunity of working with him on "Christmas On The Square" a few years back. I've never known a kinder, sweeter, more talented person in my life. I just wanted to send my condolences to his family and just to know that we'll always remember the great body of work that he left behind. – Dolly"
More Dollywood Coverage USA Today last week released another portion of Dolly's interview with them from opening weekend at her theme park. Check it out here, plus read how The Bostom Globe thinks Dollywood is helping Dolly heal the country one roller coaster at a time here because of the diverse crowd that enjoys her theme park.
U.S., U.K. Chart Update Dolly's Run, Rose, Run holds steady this week at No. 10 bluegrass albums in its 102nd chart week, the June 17 Billboard numbers released Tuesday showed. Overseas, the U.K. charts on Friday kept Dolly's Diamonds & Rhinestones, The Greatest Hits Collection atop the British county compilation albums chart, logging a 21st nonconsecutive week at No. 1 in its 29th week on the chart, her The Monument Singles Collection falls off the top 20, down from No. 20 in its fifth week, The Complete Trio Collection Deluxe inches up one to No. 18, Emmylou Harris' Original Album Series: Volume 2 (featuring one track with Dolly harmony and two tracks with Trio harmony by Dolly and Linda Ronstadt) climbs one to No. 11, Very Best Of Dolly Parton Vol. 1 slips three to No. 13, Linda Ronstadt's Original Album Series (featuring one Dolly duet and one Dolly cover) dips one to No. 14, and Harris'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 back out of the top 20 down from No. 17.
June 12: 'Mountain Magic' Emmy Race Buzz Heats Up
Dolly is working on nabbing another Emmy Award, as campaigning is underway for this year's competition. Warner Brothers' "For Your Consideration" (FYI) division hosted a virtual panel for Dolly Parton's Mountain Magic Christmas featuring Dolly herself in the media player above or here. Advertisements are appearing in industry publications, and The Hollywood Reporter's critic still considers her program one of the five frontruners most likely to be nominated for Best TV Movie one week before nomination voting begins. Their final list, here, removes Dolly from the "possibility" category under Best Actress in a TV Movie or Limited Series for a nomination, however. Dolly Parton's Christmas On The Square won Best TV Movie last year and Dolly's projects have been nominated twice before in the category.
Dolly To Perform In Mississippi Aug. 26 Dolly, who has retired from touring, will play a fundraising concert later this fall in Philadelphia, Miss., it was revealed last week. Philadelphia native Marty Stuart made the announcement Wednesday night in Nashville in concert that Dolly would play Aug. 26 at the restored Ellis Theatre as a fundraiser for his Congress of Country Music, a downtown museum Stuart is building in his Mississippi hometown to house his collection of country music history memorabilia, billed as the largest in private hands worldwide. The theatre only seats 516 guests, so it will be a very intimate show which should sell out in seconds, and since it is a fund-raiser, I would expect ticket prices to be quite high. No word about whether meet-and-greets, often sold at such fundraisers, will be included, and no ticket information has been released other than that tickets will be available "soon," will all be available on a first-come/first-served basis with no pre-sales or hold-backs, and that they usually go on sale between 30 and 60 days prior to the performance at that venue. In addition, organizers said rumors circulating on social media about sale dates and ticket prices was inaccurate and to watch the Congress's website and Facebook page for the ticket announcement. The town is located about 90 minutes northeast of Jackson and is the location of the state's only Native American reservation, the Mississippi Band of the Choctaw Indians, and today is largely a tourist attraction for the Indian casino, waterpark, and hotel complex known as Pearl River Resort and Civil Rights history tourism as the site of the infamous "Mississippi Burning" murders of Freedom Riders by the Ku Klux Klan.
Could Heart, Judas Priest Collabs Be Next Singles? Has Butterfly Records accidentally revealed the next singles from Dolly's upcoming Rockstar album? Possibly. Streaming sites such as iTunes and Amazon over the weekend added track information for two songs on the 30-tune collection: "Magic Man (Carl's Version)" with Ann Wilson of Heart and "Bygones" with Rob Halford of Judas Priest. All other tracks other than the first single "World On Fire" remain listed as just "TRACK" followed by the number.
Last 100 Dolly Vinyl Slots Remain Vinyl Me Please last week revealed they are down to their final 100 available slots for their Dolly record-of-the-month club called Vinyl Me Parton. Enroll here.
California Library Expansion Covered Although it was originally announced last year when the legislation to fund it passed and was signed into law, California's governor officially announced the addition of their state to the statewide partners in Dolly's Imagination Library last week, doubling the size of the program nationwide. Read more here.
New Dolly Interview With 'USA Today' USA Today last week ran a Dolly interview from the season opening of Dollywood. Check it out here.
U.S., U.K. Chart Updates Dolly's Diamonds & Rhinestones, The Greatest Hits Collection this week re-enters the top 100 current albums chart at No. 98 for a 23rd chart week, the June 10 numbers released Tuesday showed, while Run, Rose, Run gains two to No. 8 bluegrass albums in its 102nd chart week. Overseas, Dolly's Diamonds & Rhinestones, The Greatest Hits Collection remains in the top spot on the British county compilation albums chart, logging a 21st nonconsecutive week at No. 1 in its 29th week on the chart, while The Monument Singles Collection falls out of the top 20, down from No. 20 in its fifth week. Elsewhere on the chart, The Complete Trio Collection Deluxe re-enters the top 20 at No. 19, Emmylou Harris' Original Album Series: Volume 2 (featuring one track with Dolly harmony and two tracks with Trio harmony by Dolly and Linda Ronstadt) slips one to No. 13, Very Best Of Dolly Parton Vol. 1 rises three to No. 7, Linda Ronstadt's Original Album Series (featuring one Dolly duet and one Dolly cover) inches up one to No. 12, and Harris'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) loses one to No. 18.
Dolly Dresses In Elton Drag For Charity
Dolly is participating in the Let Your Inner Elton Out challenge to promote awareness and fundraising for the Elton John AIDS Foundation's Rocket Fund to raise $125 million over the next three years to find a cure for AIDS/HIV. Check out her photo here or above mimicking Elton's iconic 1973 photoshoot in a white feather suit wearing rhinestone-encrusted oversized glasses. The challenge encourages you to photograph yourself in an Elton-inspired costume that reflects your authentic self and love for others. Other fans are asked to share their photos to social media with the hashtag #InnerElton. A video from John about the project is available here or in the media player below, and click here for more information.
Dolly Helps NBC Promo Olympics
Dolly leads off NBC's newest Olympics promotional video released last week, as various celebrities are presented with you-cannot-turn-down offers that they turn down because they will conflict with their plans to watch the Summer Olympics on the network next month. Dolly's is an opportunity to perform in outer space. Watch it here or in the media player above.
Dolly Promotes Wal-Mart Perfumes Wal-Mart last week released a new commercial for Dolly's four-pack of perfumes under her Scent from Above line of fragrances. Check it out here or in the media player below.
June 5: 'Forbes': Dolly's Wealth Grew $65 Million Last Year Dolly's net worth grew by 17 percent, or $65 million, last year to $440 million, Forbes magazine revealed last week in its new list of the nation's top self-made women. Dolly came in at No. 59 on the tally, up from No. 74 at $375 million last year and No. 86 at $350 million two years ago in the first time the publication's economics experts ever published an attempt to estimate her total worth.
Longest span of No. 1 hits on US Top Country Albums chart for a female with the 43-year, 156-day stretch from 1977 to 2020 (third-longest overall)
Most studio albums released by a female country singer with 65
Most top 10 entries on the US Top Country Albums chart for a female with 48
She currently holds 10 Guinness World Records. In a statement, Dolly said: "I am humbled every time I receive a new Guinness World Record title. I share these new honors with my fans, who have allowed me to enjoy such a long career.".
'World On Fire' Falls Off Rock Charts Dolly's first rock chart run is over as quickly as it began, as"World On Fire" falls off the June 3 Rock Digital Song Sales Chart, Billboard reported Tuesday. It also falls off Hot Rock Songs, down from No, 21, country digital song sales, down from No. 3, all-genre digital song sales, down from No. 4, and Hot Rock and Alternative Songs, down from No. 26. Diamonds & Rhinestones, The Greatest Hits Collection falls back out of the top 100 current albums chart, down from No. 90 in its 22nd week, and Run, Rose, Run dips four to No. 10 bluegrass albums in its 101th chart week. Overseas, Dolly's Diamonds & Rhinestones, The Greatest Hits Collection remains in the top spot on the British county compilation albums chart, logging a 20th nonconsecutive week at No. 1 in its 28th week on the chart, her The Monument Singles Collection loses seven to No. 20 in its fifth week, The Complete Trio Collection Deluxe falls out of the top 20, down No. 11, and Emmylou Harris' Original Album Series: Volume 2 (featuring one track with Dolly harmony and two tracks with Trio harmony by Dolly and Linda Ronstadt) rises five to No. 12, while Very Best Of Dolly Parton Vol. 1, Linda Ronstadt's Original Album Series (featuring one Dolly duet and one Dolly cover), and Harris'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) re-enter the top 20 at No. 10, No. 13, and No. 17, respectively.
In Memoriam: Cynthia Weil, Les Leverett Two important people in Dolly's career passed away last week. Songwriter Cynthis Weil died June 1 at age 82, followed by photographer Les Leverette on June 2 at age 96. Weil and her husband Barry Mann wrote Dolly's pop crossover single "Here You Come Again," which was her first pop hit in 1977. Their only bigger hits were "Somewhere Out There" for Linda Ronstadt and James Ingram, "On Broadway" for The Drifters and "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" for The Righteous Brothers (which Dolly also recorded with Neil Diamond) which for many years was the most broadcasted song in the history of radio. In a statement to social media, Dolly said: "I was so sad to hear that Cynthia Weil had passed. She was one of the greatest writers of all time and I owe her such a debt of gratitude because she and her partner, Barry Mann, wrote my first million-selling song, "Here You Come Again." So, I have always been grateful and will be eternally grateful to her. I'm sure she will be missed by all the ones that love her and always be appreciated for all of the wonderful music she left behind." Her obituary appeared in The New York Timeshere. Leverett, longtime Grand Ole Opry photographer shot the covers for at least 15 of Dolly's albums over a four-year period of 1970 through 1973 (and possibly earlier, as RCA did not start listing her album photographers until 1970) includ9ing Best of Dolly Parton, The Right Combination/Burning The Midnight Oil, Touch Your Woman and Bubbling Over, which he talks about here.His obituary is available here.
D.C., Knox Dolly Tributes Take Place Two big Dolly tributes happened over the weekend. In Washington, D.C., the Gay Men's Chorus offered a weekend of Dolly music with several concerts. Read about them here and see photos here and then learn about Knoxville's Rhinestonefest (formerly Dollyfest even though it still honors all things Dolly) here.
Montana Taking Imagination Library Statewide Montana will join the growing list of states taking Dolly's Imagination Library early childhood literacy program statewide, it was announced this week. Learn more here.
Remixed Kenny Duet Released Friday The posthumous album Kenny Rogers' widow curated, Life Is Like A Song, featuring a remixed duet with Dolly on "Tell Me That You Love Me," a track which first appeared on a now out-of-print Time-Life boxed set 10 years ago, hit stores Friday. Listen to the song on YouTube here or in the media player below and download it here.