Dolly Parton has been making music since she was 10 years old and released her first album 50 years ago in 1967! But that doesn’t mean she’s slowing down anytime soon. The country legend recently visited SiriusXM in Nashville to take questions from an audience of children for a special on Kids Place Live. Why? Because after releasing 43 solo studio albums, four live albums, two holiday albums, several collaboration albums and countless compilation albums, the Queen of Country is finally releasing an album just for kids.
Proceeds from the sale of Parton’s children’s album I Believe in You will fund her Imagination Library, a nonprofit that sends books to children every month until they start kindergarten.
During her visit to SiriusXM, Parton answered questions from young audience members and shared the story of the first song she ever wrote. Parton was just five years old and couldn’t yet write herself, but she knew how to rhyme and her mother wrote down the lyrics. Parton revealed the inspiration for her song was a homemade doll, Tiny Tassel Top.
“I wanted a doll. Daddy took this [corn] cob and he burned some eye holes in it with the hot poker from the fire, made it some little eyes. Mama wrapped the shucks back around it, made like a little dress, and she put the little corn tassels on top. And I named it Tiny Tassel Top.”
Hear the acclaimed songwriter sing the short verse she wrote for her childhood doll in the video below. Warning: This story will tug at the heartstrings, whether or not you have kids of your own!
Later in the conversation, host Mindy Thomas asked if Parton ever dressed up for Halloween.
“I like Dolly Parton,” the songstress replied.
So, how do we dress up as the Queen of Country?
“Oh, it’s easy! You just need a big ol’ wig and stuff some stuff in here,” she said, laughing. “I’m fun!
True, she’s known for her signature blonde hair, ample bosom, manicured nails and flashy clothing. In the past, Parton confessed to crafting her look after a “painted lady” she saw as a child.
“I just thought she was the prettiest thing I’d ever seen,” she told Southern Living in 2016.
At what point does it stop being “dress up” and start becoming part of who you are? We’ll save those philosophical questions for another day and focus on the punchline: Dolly Parton once dressed up as Dolly Parton – “over-exaggerated my own self” – and still lost a Dolly Parton look-a-like contest!
Hear her tell the story in the clip below.
Hear Dolly Parton’s full Kids Place Live interview along with audience Q&A On Demand.
The Absolutely Mindy Show airs weekdays at 7 am ET on Kids Place Live.