In her latest lovely interview with Stephen Colbert, living legend Dolly Parton divulges her all-time top 3 favorite songs she’s ever written.
There’s never been a soul on Earth quite like Dolly Parton. The endlessly creative and unique country star has written countless #1 hits for both other artists – and of course, herself. Her prolific career has given birth to timeless hits like Jolene, 9 to 5, and I Will Always Love You.
But has anyone ever asked Parton which of her craftings rank as her absolute favorites? While promoting her new book Songteller: My Life in Lyrics on Colbert’s Late Show, the host asks just that. And she’s more than happy to oblige.
Dolly Parton Names Favorite 3 of Her Songs
“Well my very favorite song – from a very personal level – is the Coat of Many Colors,” Dolly answers without hesitation. “It’s kinda a little signature song of mine.”
Fans of Parton should know this one right off the bat. She’s spoken on her love of the song while performing it at many of her sold-out performances. It has become an anthem for her.
“It’s about my mom, it’s about family. It’s about acceptance – tolerance. And even speaks to bullying – how the kids made fun of me in school,” she reveals. It’s become such a part of her identity, even, that her home state teaches it’s lyrical content in school.
“They even teach out of it in some of the grammar schools in Tennessee,” she smiles. “They use that little song [to say] it’s okay to be different. And we should love an accept one another.”
I Will Always Love You & Whitney Houston’s Legacy
As far as performing a song, however, fans won’t be surprised at Parton’s pick.
“And as far as [as a] singer/songwriter – all singers love to have a song that you can sing tender. Or you can go big if you want to – show how much volume and range you have, and all.”
“So I would say for that, that I Will Always Love You is really good for that. I can sing it little, or I can sing it big.” Not just because she wrote it, she notes, “but because that song is really special.”
Earlier in the same interview, Parton speaks at length on her admiration of the late Whitney Houston’s cover of the song – which she says elevated it to new heights.
“When Whitney Houston did I Will Always Love You… it was just this simple, sweet little heartfelt song. And she took it and made it so big and so beautiful. When I heard [her perform it] – I couldn’t believe that was my song. That’s my song? My little song? That’s become a classic.”
Lesser Known Dolly Hit: Down From Dover
Leave it to Dolly to reveal more than anyone else ever expects. Her third favorite, she notes, is a song that most people “have never heard”.
“I like songs I’ve recorded in albums, as well, that people have never heard,” Dolly continues. The song in question? Down from Dover.
“It’s about a girl that got pregnant, and she had to leave home. Had to go out and live on a farm with an old lady,” she notes. At the time of Dover‘s release, however, Dolly says the song never really saw the light of day.
“Well back at the time when I put it out on the record – they wouldn’t play it on the radio!” She quips.
“Lord now you can have a baby right on television!” “It’s all different,” she laughs. And isn’t that the truth.
Dolly’s Honorable Mention? Jolene
“Of course Jolene is everybody’s favorite, and I enjoy singing that one.”
You can watch Dolly Parton‘s full interview with Colbert on her favorite songs below. Here’s to hoping this national treasure, and unrivaled songwriter, is with us for many more songs to come.
“Dolly Parton indulges Stephen’s request and lists her favorite Dolly Parton songs, including her signature song “Coat of Many Colors,” and talks about what they mean to her. Dolly’s new book “Songteller: My Life in Lyrics” is available everywhere now, and check out her new album “A Holly Dolly Christmas.”The Late Show with Stephen Colbert
[H/T The Late Show]