Dolly Parton is a piece of work, as they say here in Tennessee. She also celebrated her 70th birthday January 19th. Dolly and her husband Carl Dean will celebrate 50 year wedding anniversary on May 30th. She has been shopping for a wedding dress and Carl has been suit shopping she announced to the crowd. She said, “There were only four of us at the Church in Ringold, Georgia in 1966 and I want to have the big wedding, I never got to have.”
With enough achievements under her belt to fill several lifetimes for most people, Dolly shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, if any thing she’s more like her new roller coaster: speeding up.
At a press conference in Nashville, she announced that she is set to bring her boundless energy to stages in 60+ cities as part of her first major tour of the United States and Canada in more than 25 years. She has only played ‘select dates’ over the past two decades, but 2016 will find her playing cities across North America. The full list of tour dates and venues will be released shortly.
Dolly said that the set list for the tour will of course include many of her hit songs while weaving in new songs from her double-disc album, ‘Pure & Simple with Dolly’s Biggest Hits.’ The album, she revealed, will feature one disc of familiar hits and a second disc of all-new material.
The Country Music Hall of Famer is on one of the biggest hot streaks of her career after her hugely successful TV movie, “Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors,” attracted a network record of 15.8+ million viewers and was the most watched movie on network TV in more than 3 years. “Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors,” will be released on DVD May 3.
And that rollercoaster? Dolly confirmed that 2016 will see the launch of “the World’s Fastest Wooden Roller Coaster” at Dollywood in the Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee. Named Lightning Rod, the coaster will top 73 mph and is part of a projected $300 million that will be invested in upgrades at the famed resort and theme park. Also new at Dollywood: “Festival of Nations,” a series of shows scheduled for March 19 through April 18, 2016, featuring live performances from Argentina, Ecuador, Nova Scotia, France, Germany, The United Kingdom and more.
Dolly also revealed that, following the success of “Coat of Many Colors,” negotiations are underway for more television and film projects in the future. Dolly also confirmed ‘Jolene’ already in the works.
At one point, Dolly took a moment to comment on the sad passing of country artist, Joey Feek. “The Lord needed Joey Feek more than we did,” she said.
Dolly had the full house of media outlets in laughter while she announced all the great things coming up including with a new double album, an upcoming North American tour and a major investment in Dollywood, it seems Ms Parton, like her roller coaster, is on a roll.
By Preshias Harris (Photo Credit: Preshias Harris)