Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Dolly Parton Speaks to Country Woman about Faith, Family, Her Life as a Working Girl and Staying True to Her Roots

Dolly Parton's Here You Come Again was the second album I ever bought for myself right after my Shaun Cassidy Album. 

To put my kids to bed as infants I always sang Dolly's Coat Of Many Colors. It is a beautiful song about a mother's love for her children and I couldn't think of anything better. It was way better then singing about a cradle falling out of a tree. 

As a huge Dolly fan I am proud to post that Dolly is featured on the August/September issue of Country Woman for which is available now.

Iconic singer, songwriter, actress, philanthropist and entrepreneur Dolly Parton does it all – the only thing she has to sacrifice is sleep! On the heels of a world tour promoting her new album, Blue Smoke, the self-proclaimed early bird is up before the sunrise and makes time to dream, cook, spend time with her family and live the country woman lifestyle.

Please see below for select quotes from Country Woman’s interview with Dolly Parton, featured in the August/September issue, which is on stands July 8:

Her Southern cooking and family recipes: “I’m the one they’ll always ask to bring the chicken and dumplings. I make it like my mama and my grandmas and my aunts. I definitely still cook like a country woman.”

Where she gets inspiration from her songs: “My songs are the door to every dream I’ve had and every success I’ve ever achieved.”

On playing the guitar at age seven and what she used as a fake microphone: “I used to put a tin can on a tobacco stick. And those were not chickens out there in the yard, they were my audience.”

What she would have done if she didn’t pursue her passion: “If it hadn’t been for music, I’d have been a beautician. Or maybe I’d have been a missionary; but where would I get my hair done?”

How Dollywood got started: “I just love [the mountain range] the Smokies. I bought the old home place years ago and fixed it up as a retreat.”

Why she doesn’t ride roller coasters: “I have motion sickness. I’d even get sick riding the school bus and the merry-go-round on the playground. Plus I’m always afraid I’ll lose my hair or something else might fall out.”

Her goals for Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort (opening next summer): “With the resort, we want to inspire people to bring their families and connect again. In this high-tech world, everybody is off in his or her own little world and always on some smartphone or a computer or something, and we’re not connecting as a family. Everybody is living separately, together. We’re trying to encourage people to bond with family again…at least for a vacation.”

On being the book lady when it comes to her organization Imagination Library: “We send a book once a month to kids from the time they’re born until they start school. Many of the kids don’t know I sing or write songs. To them, I’m the book lady.”

How her father inspired Imagination Library, which open to all children regardless of family income: “He was from a huge family also, and, like a lot of folks in the mountains, he didn’t have a chance to get an education. He had to go to work to help feed the rest of the family. I know how smart my daddy was, even though he couldn’t read and write. That was what inspired me to do the Imagination Library, and I am really passionate about it.”

Her views on education: “You can’t get enough books into the hands of enough children. We need them to learn to read, because even if you can’t go to school, if you can read, you can educate yourself.”

On fond family memories growing up in the country: “In the country, it’s just too hot in your old house in the summertime to be inside. So everybody gathered on the front porch or the back porch, depending on where the shade was. That’s where we’d sit to gossip, to talk together and to sing and to play. The porch was a very special place for us.”

How her faith and country roots have kept her sane: “Well, it’s all kept me sane. It’s kept me stable. A belief in God is essential. You have to believe in something bigger than yourself. We grew up believing that through God all things are possible. I think I believed that so much that I made it happen. I just live by that Scripture. The fact that I can write is very helpful, too. I can write about anything I feel. Also, family helps me stay grounded and humble. I know what it’s like to be without, and I know what it’s like to have things. And I appreciate both.”

What she’s working on now: “Right now, I’m writing my life story as a musical for the stage. That’s really one of my big dreams, and it’s in the works.”

On landing a career among country music’s most honored performers: “I think of myself as a working girl.”

Country Woman magazine celebrates the diversity, strength and spirit of all women who live in or long for the country. Like a gracious host, this bimonthly magazine offers an inviting selection of country decorating ideas, fun crafts, mouth-watering down-home recipes, gardening tips and more. Country Woman’s engaging, entertaining and informative content can be found in print, online at, and as a digital download for the iPad, Nook, Kindle or Google Play and Android. Follow Country Woman on Facebook, Pinterest, Google+ and Ravelry.

Country Woman is part of the Home & Garden group of The Reader's Digest Association, Inc., a global multi-brand media and marketing company that educates, entertains and connects consumers around the world with products and services from trusted brands.

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