Nine of the best Dolly Parton quotes

As the queen of country rides into town, we revel in her wit and wisdom



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  • © pipilongstockings

  • © Timothy R Wildey

  • © Dave Hogan

As you can see, Dolly Parton is a trove of homespun, sassy and self-deprecating lols. More significantly, she’s also a blip in the matrix of popular culture: a Christian who revels in trashiness, a country star who brought honky tonk to the disco and a performer who can solicit tears from both gents in stetsons and drag queens. The 68-year-old once even entered a drag contest for Dolly Parton lookalikes – and lost. Not that she lacks a discernible image.

Let’s face it: few performers with such outlandish and eccentric flair from the ’70s and ’80s have made it this far without being smeared, reviled – or worse – investigated by the police. Dolly, however, is bulletproof.

Perhaps it’s due to her roots: raised in staggering poverty as one of 12 kids in a one-room shack. Most probably it’s her songs, which, from ‘Jolene’ to ‘I Will Always Love You’ ooze a conviction and earnestness that’s both rampantly unfashionable yet admired the world over. She’s earned the right to do anything, up to and including opening a flippin’ theme park called Dollywood, and not be called up on it.

Approaching her eighth decade, she’s bringing her ‘Blue Smoke’ tour to The O2 – wit, wisdom and wigs in tow – before voyaging into the heart of Glastonbury to show the kids how it’s done. What a way to make a living, indeed.

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