BRIGHT BLONDES DOLLY AND MIRANDA DINE OUT ON DUMPLING
“You flew too high up off the ground/ it's stormy weather and had to come back down/ but I've found a new thread for my old spool/ just because I'm blonde don't think I'm dumb/ cause this dumb blonde ain't nobody's fool.” - Dumb Blonde - Curly Putman.
When septuagenarian singing actor Dolly Parton needed duet partners for her movie Dumpling's soundtrack single Dumb Blonde she didn't have to look far.
The Smoky Mountains raised superstar teamed with Pistol Annies princess Miranda Lambert who hails from Texas small town Lindale.
Lambert, a dual Grammy winner and seven-time CMA female vocalist of the year, emulated Parton's success as Dollywood theme park creator.
She also created diverse investments before and after she married and divorced Oklahoma born star and TV host Blake Shelton.
Miranda, 35, was perfect partner for Dolly, now 73, on Dumb Blonde - first hit on Dolly's 1967 debut album Hello I'm Dolly.
It ignites the musical comedy, directed by Anne Fletcher and written by Kristin Hahn, based on Julie Murphy's #1 New York Times best-selling novel of the same name.
Jennifer Aniston plays Rosie Dickson, a former small Texas town beauty pageant queen whose plus-size daughter, Willowdean, played by Danielle Macdonald, enters a beauty contest amid struggles with body image but finds confidence in Dolly's songs.
The pageant revolutionises the Texas town when other contestants follow her footsteps in the movie that features Odeya Rush, Dove Cameron and Harold Perrineau and was released on December 7 by Netflix,
Parton wrote six new songs and revamped six of her hits for the soundtrack, co-written and produced with Grammy nominee and 4 Non-Blondes front-woman Linda Perry.
GIRLS IN THE MOVIES
“Popcorn, soda, box of Raisinets/ velvet-cushioned seats and soft armrests/ best seat in my favorite movie house/ start my dreaming as the lights go out/ up on the silver screen, I picture me/ living out my passions, hopes, and fantasies/ I want to be the girl in the movies.” - Girl In The Movies - Dolly Parton-Linda Perry.
Dolly earned a Golden Globe nomination for her original song Girl In The Movies for best Original Song-Motion Picture at 76th awards show on January 6.
Her vast cast of duet partners include Mavis Staples, Elle King, Alison Krauss and Rhonda Vincent on the soundtrack, released on November 30 on her Dolly Record label through Sony-RCA.
It also features Parton and Adelaide born Sia on another classic Here I Am Again - first single and album entrée.
Perry met Parton after an appearance on The Talk TV show.
“When we met to work on a song for the movie, well, we just started writing one song after another,” Parton recalled.
“And they were good! We were just so excited, we started recording them. We didn't even know if all these were going to go into the movie but the producers started loving all this music. Before you know it, they've got this whole soundtrack.
“Linda had all these great, great melodies, so we worked really well together. Completely different people. We are so different, yet we're almost totally alike on the creative level. I've never worked with a women before! I've never had a female producer. I've never really written with anyone so this was all so different.
“As a writer I have to leave my heart open. That's why I've always said I couldn't harden my heart against hurt, or anything. If you do that you're not going to feel all that emotion you need to feel to write what the people are actually feeling. That's what we need. Listen to what you feel.”
ALISON KRAUSS & RHONDA VINCENT – BLUEGRASS BELLES
“I want to be the girl in the movies/ the one with the glint in her eyes/ the girl that seldom loses/ beautiful, with grace and style/ acting out her story, standing in her glory/ happy ever after/ I want to be the girl in the movies.” - Girl In The Movies - Dolly Parton-Linda Perry.
Dolly revisits her Appalachia roots with 27-time Grammy winner Alison Krauss and IBMA Entertainer of the Year and seven-time Female Vocalist Rhonda Vincent as they resurrect If We Don't.
She also joins rocker Elle King on Holding On To You and Here You Come Again featuring 14-year-old Willa Amai.
Parton delivered a joyous funk fuelled fire with soul singer Macy Gray and Dorothy on Two Doors Down.
“I just love her sound,” Dolly said of Macy.
“She was hanging around the sessions, and I got such a kick out of her, because she's as unusual as a person as she is with her look and her sound. She is a complete, the word is unique, and I love that in a person.
“Like the song with Rhonda and Alison, the bluegrass feel. I wanted a real country, funky track, kind of a June Carter/Johnny Cash kind of track, but with a funky sound. That's what's so great about this record.”
It was an entrée of sorts to a recent visit by Mavis to Shotgun Willie Nelson's Luck Reunion Festival near Austin where he launched his cannabis infused coffee blend - a sibling of his Willie's Reserve leaf and buds.
“Don't let me drink that coffee,” Mavis, now 79, pleaded to Willie, 86, as she promoted her 14 th solo album We Get By.
RED SHOES LIKE AUNT LUCILLE
“I remember as a child/ I was absolutely wild/ about some red shoes that my Aunt Lucille wore/ she would let me stomp in those high heels/ up and down round the house and 'round the wrap around porch/ and from that moment on/ I have had a pair of my own/ but I'd make me feel at home when brand new/ they'd build my confidence as if they'd been heaven sent/ I'd feel alone, I'm putting on my red shoes.” - Red Shoes - Dolly Parton-Linda Perry.
Dolly's new singles include sparkling Red Shoes - something she dreamed of long before she was 18 and met her husband Carl Dean, then 21, at a Wishy Washy laundromat in 1966.
Dolly's hope, ambitions, desires and determination also inspired genre bending Girl in the Movies.
“My whole life has been built on positive thinking and dreams, believing that I could do it,” Dolly explained.
“So, yes, I've been influenced back when I was a kid by the movies. There's something about so many of us who've gone to the movies. When you're a kid, you look up at that screen, you see people living their lives with confidence. You feel that.
“I'd see those movie magazines, and I'd want to be that! I wanted to have fancy clothes and make up. I wanted to be pretty. I was Backwoods Barbie!”
Another new song Push And Pull captures tension between Aniston and Macdonald in the movie and real life family dynamics.
“One of my sisters was going through the same thing with her daughter at the same time,” Parton explained.
“They'd just go back and forth, back and forth. It really inspired me, that one particular emotion of just trying to use your own control to control another person. And it never works.
“But that let me personalise these songs a little bit more than just reflecting the story.”
Parton has long attracted high profile collaborators diverse as embryonic mentor Porter Wagoner, Texan Kenny Rogers and her Trio partners Linda Ronstadt and Emmylou Harris.
“I'm always amazed by what's going on now, and that I'm still around,” Parton confessed.
“I'm flattered that a lot of these people kind of look up to me. You worry that you can't be that good, you can't be all that. I'm just a regular person, just trying to live my life.
“I want to do good. I want to touch people. I'm not preaching a gospel. I'm not trying to do anything but live my life the way I see fit. If that's touched people, and is an inspiration, then that makes me feel good. Sometimes you're better being an example than trying to go fight a battle. My way has always been to address things naturally and honestly, and let it be part of my personality. Just be it.”
Movies are a strong fabric in Dolly's 60-year career including 9 To 5, Steel Magnolias, Joyful Noise, Christmas of Many Colors and Circle of Love .
Parton previously earned five Golden Globe nominations - in 1981 her track 9 To 5 was nominated for Best Original Song.
She was also nominated in New Star of the Year in a Motion Picture and Best Motion Picture Actress-musical/comedy for her work in Nine To Five.
In 1983 she was nominated for Best Actress In Motion Picture-Musical/Comedy for her work in The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas.
And in 2006 Travelin' Thru (Transamerica) was nominated for Best Original Song.
Dolly's Imagination Library provided over 100 million books to children around the world, every month from birth until the age of five.
She also created her Smoky Mountain Rise telethon for the My People Fund , created when fires destroyed the area where she grew up.
Her Sandollar Productions produced Father of the Bride and Father of the Bride II
Netflix also plans a series of TV films in 2019 based on different Parton classic songs with Dolly's Dixie Pixie Productions .
Dolly also plans to release 9 To 5 The Musical - Original Broadcast Cast Recording - after its season at Savoy Theatre in London from January 28-August 31.
FLOYD PARTON FOOTNOTE