Miley Cyrus drops the quote amongst a very fitting speech as she presents godmother Dolly Parton with her first-ever Hitmaker Award from Billboard.
What a pair! While accepting the landmark award, Dolly Parton, 74, starts off by thanking her “little fairy goddaughter Miley” with her Billboard Hitmaker Award in-hand.
“I’m very appreciative of this,” the music icon starts off. “I’ve been with Billboard for so many years, had so many hits on the charts there, and I’m very grateful for that,” she adds. “Of course, I’m proud of all of the wonderful women in show business that write all of these wonderful songs.” Among those she’s proud of, of course, is Miley Cyrus herself.
Cyrus presented the award to Parton during the Billboard Women in Music event Thursday night. Speaking on behalf of her Godmother, whom she refers to as her “aunt”, Cyrus says – straight up – “I’ve never met anyone that doesn’t like Dolly Parton.” And chances are, she’s not lying!
Miley Cyrus Gushes Over “Fairy Godmother” Dolly Parton
Cyrus, 28, glows when she speaks of Dolly Parton, as do we all. Her “very precious fairy godmother,” she calls Parton, who she says represents such a stature “not only to me but to admirers from all around the world.”
Continuing her statement, Cyrus adds that “it’s safe to say if they don’t like her, it’s only because they love her. As the most honored and revered female country singer-songwriter of all time, Dolly Parton has influenced music beyond her own genre.” Truer words have never been spoken.
Miley then highlights Parton’s exceptionality, noting she holds “25 gold, platinum and multi-platinum awards”. In addition “Dolly has had 26 songs reach No. 1 on the Billboard country charts — a record for any female artist.”
Moreover, she adds that “Aunt Dolly” has “10 Grammy Awards under her customized bedazzled belt”. All the while, Dolly Parton has “paved the way for other women songwriters, encouraging them to take ownership and get the credit that they deserve — an issue many women in the songwriting industry still struggle with today.”
Parton Famously Denied Elvis Presley
In a clip posted to their Twitter, Billboard marks a highlight of Cyrus’ speech to Dolly.
“When Elvis sought to record Dolly’s ‘I Will Always Love You,’ Dolly famously said no, she says of Parton. As a result, Parton was “keeping control of her song that Elvis wanted half of the publishing royalties to.”
“Slay all day, Dolly,” Miley concludes with a smile. Curiously enough, however, Dolly Parton goes on to name several modern female singer-songwriters who are influencing the genre. Among them are Miley’s contemporaries Taylor Swift and Brandi Carlile – but she fails to mention her Goddaughter.
“I’d like to acknowledge a few — some of them older, kind of back in my day,” Dolly starts off. “Cindy Walker, who wrote some of the greatest songs ever, and of course Loretta Lynn — wonderful, wonderful songwriter,” Parton continues before moving onto modern songwriters.
“And this day in time, of course, Taylor Swift. I mean, she’s just right up there, probably No. 1,” Parton adds. Hopefully, Cyrus is also a Swift fan and agrees, as Miley is far from a slouch herself when it comes to songwriting.
“And of course, Brandi Carlile; there’s just so many that write so many good songs,” Dolly Parton continues. “And I think it’s so important that we acknowledge the women that write — and sing! — in country music. And I think it’s also very important that they take control of their own business.” Perhaps this is Parton’s saving grace, as her Goddaughter Miley has never identified as a country artist.
Dolly Parton & Miley Cyrus: Christmas in July
Dolly Parton has been a part of Miley’s life since birth as a longtime friend of her father, Billy Ray Cyrus. The two often champion one another and appear together on Dolly’s latest album, A Holly Dolly Christmas.
“Dolly reached out about doing a Christmas record with her and only for Dolly Parton do you sing a Christmas carol in July,” Cyrus recalls. “But she makes physical records and so she had to get it turned in. I was singing about Christmas in the middle of L.A. summer, and only for Dolly,” she laughs.