Dolly Parton

She can sing, she can play the guitar, the banjo, the fiddle, the penny whistle, the harmonica, the dulcimer, the piano, the autoharp, drums, and no doubt she could pick out a tune on the mandolin too, particularly if given a rhinestone-encrusted one. She writes songs  (must be well over 3,000 by now). She can act (particularly if she’s given a part based on Dolly Parton). She has her own theme park. She heads a children’s literacy scheme. She is actively involved in the American Eagle Foundation. I don’t know where to stop. She’s penned her own cookbook of southern specialities, an autobiography, her own children’s book. She’s a stand-up comedian, celebrated for her one-liners. I must stop here, but I could go on.

Dolly Parton

Yes, it’s true, this hugely talented woman with big heart, big boobs and big sense of humour, turns 63 today. She started to realise her singer/songwriter ambition in her early teens and has been shining and refining her dreams ever since, with no sign of slowing down. Most recently she completed a world tour for her latest album Backwoods Barbie and has written the music and lyrics for the 9 to 5 stage musical, which opens this year on Broadway.

I was hoping to find a Dolly movie on one of the many channels today, but I’ve searched in vain. The closest I’ve got is a biopic about another country songstress LeAnn Rimes on Five US at noon – Holiday in Your Heart: The LeAnn Rimes Story.

LeAnn Rimes

Click here for a clip of LeAnn belting out her version of one of Dolly’s most famous songs. Actually, is it her version? It sounds like Whitney Houston’s version to me – that powerhouse rendition complete with the vocal acrobatics and that pregnant pause before the final powerhouse ‘look I can sing’ bit at the end.

I will always prefer Dolly’s heartfelt version complete with emotional voice over section and country twangs.

LeAnn Rimes   Dolly Parton

Which one do you prefer, LeAnn’s (aka Whitney’s) or Dolly’s?