Music

Is Dolly Parton originally from Nashville?


Dolly Parton is one of the many artists who put Nashville on the map. Along with many country singers, Dolly made her name there and it is now the place to go to make it in the music business. But is Dolly from Nashville, or did she go there to start her career?

Dolly Parton is a Tennessean, having been born and raised in the state.

However, she did not go to live in the state’s capital, Nashville, until some time later.

Dolly was born on January 19, 1946 in Pittman Centre, Tennessee, which is within the Sevier County, a 224-mile journey from Nashville.

For Dolly, despite growing up in poverty, her upbringing was filled with joy, though she dreamed of making her name outside of her county.

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She told The Guardian: “My memories of growing up in Tennessee include memories of all of us kids, memories of singing and church; chores that I never really liked; misty mountains and laughter – yet still dreaming of seeing what the world held for me outside of my mountain home.

“Of course, not everything was perfect but I prefer to remember the best of times…

“We were poor but I never felt poor. We always had food, a roof over our heads and clothes on our backs.

“It wasn’t exactly what we wanted but Mama and Daddy were always quick to point out the families that suffered far more than we ever did. It all seemed just natural to me.

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“It’s only when you look back at beans and cornbread, sleeping several to a bed, using newspaper for insulation and dealing with an outhouse that you realise – yes, I guess we were poor. It was crowded!”

Dolly was one of 12 children but always hoped to make it in country music, having her first taste of fame as a nine-year-old.

She sang on TV and radio as a child, and had her first taste of Nashville life when she performed at the Grand Ole Opry.

Dolly was 13-years-old when she performed there, and even met Johnny Cash, who introduced her onto stage and encouraged her to continue performing.

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He said: “We’ve got a little girl here from up in East Tennessee.

“Her daddy’s listening to the radio at home and she’s gonna be in real trouble if she doesn’t sing tonight, so let’s bring her out here.”

Ultimately, Dolly went to Nashville the day after graduating high school, turning up on a bus to start her career.

Since then, Dolly has had some major landmarks, including having had 25 Number Ones on the Billboard Hot Country chart, and has sold over 11 million albums.

As well as this, the city is almost a memorial to her by now, with so many landmarks having been erected in her honour.

At The Graduate Hotel, there is a room themed around Dolly, as well as a karaoke bar which includes an animatronic house band, in which one member sings Jolene.

The White Limozeen, a rooftop bar in the city, is completely Dolly-themed, even named after her 1989 album of the same name.

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Dolly even has her own recording studio, Inca Hoots, where fans can take tours on a large tour bus – though the interiors are only visible to those working there.





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