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Backwoods Barbie

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iTunes Review

Dolly Parton has spent recent years reclaiming her artistic edge by exploring bluegrass sounds and interpreting ‘60s-era material. Flashes of nearly every phase of her career are evident in Backwoods Barbie's tracks. Devotees of Dolly’s early work will appreciate “Jesus & Gravity” (an introspective acoustic-oriented number) and the title song (an examination of feminine self-esteem with the feel of a traditional Appalachian tune). Parton rekindles the torment of classic honky-tonk balladry in “I Will Forever Hate Roses,” “Made of Stone” and “Cologne.” Covers of “She Drives Me Crazy” and “The Tracks of My Tears” recall her glossy pop work of the ‘70s and ‘80s, while “Only Dreamin’” is of a piece with her recent folk-tinged output. Beyond these stylistic shifts, Dolly uses tunes like “Better Get to Livin’” and “Somebody’s Everything” to express an uplifting message of self-empowerment.Backwoods Barbie reaffirms Parton’s vitality as both working singer/songwriter and enduring cultural icon.

Customer Reviews

Beyond Wonderful!

Well, she has done it again. This 2006 Kennedy Award winning phenomenon never ceases to amaze and humble me. In 1979, I was a senior in high school. Several of my friends/classmates proudly proclaimed our "Dolly Love", which was not considered "cool." We didn't care...we were the cool ones! At least ten of us piled into someone's van; drove to the Atlanta Civic Center and Auditorium ( designed for HUGE shows/ national tours/ Monster Truck Pulls,etc. This tiny, gorgeous, gossamer angel walked onstage with just her guitar. She proceeded to enchant every single person in that enormous auditorium, for almost three solid hours. Then, we scurried around to the backstage entrance, hoping to, at the very least, see her bus. Then, she just skipped out of the door; saw all of us; made a beeline towards us with greetings, hugs and autographs. She stayed with us for at least twenty minutes. Obviously, I have never forgotten that experience. She loves her life; her talents; her wigs and make-up. And, in that late Atlanta evening - she loved us, as well. Only Love "Dolly Mama", xoxoxo

Do Not Hate

I find it so funny to read the "one star" reviews...the ones that consider Dolly to be old and irrelevant. I am sure the reviews are from a generation that has the positive role models of Britney Spears, Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton to admire. To see everything from their lack of underwear to their extreme lack of talent is a testament to the sad state of the entertainment industry. The really sad thing is that the lives of those "one star" reviewers will not even amount to the lackluster careers of the aforementioned "stars." In ten years we will barely remember Britney, Paris, Lindsay, Carrie, Beyonce, Rihanna or numerous other so-called divas. Dolly continues to have a career after 40 years because she is a relevant musical talent. She has written and published more than 3000 songs, unlike the one reviewer that could only rhyme the word "crap." In addition, she has her own theme park, her own record label and her own outrageous style that makes her the most recognizable woman in the world. As she says in Backwoods Barbie, she is often misjudged for the look but it has helped her amass a fortune to rival Oprah Winfrey. However, unlike Oprah, Dolly gives back her fortune in many private ways and not in huge televised events. There are many children that benefit from her generosity through "Dolly's Imagination Library." To summarize, you one-star hacks...pray that you will be able to live to be 162 to contribute a fraction of Dolly's contribution to society in a mere 62 years. She may look like a freak to some but she is the most genuine caring and talented people in the world. Besides she is used to the criticism and more than likely has enough money not to care. For the rest of us that love her so much...back the f*ck off haters...don't come for Dolly or we will serve you.

It grows on you...

I wasn't thrilled with the idea of Dolly wanting to go mainstream again. I really wasn't. And then I heard samples of the songs and I was less than thrilled. And then I heard the whole album and that all changed. This is a wonderful album... and much less mainstream than her management would like you to think. It's always about the songs and the vocals and the writing. And Ms. Dolly always brings that... top notch. "Cologne" is heartbreaking. "Drives Me Crazy" is pure bluegrass fun. (With a surprise ending that is bound to put a smile on your face.) "Jesus & Gravity" proves that Ms. Dolly still has the pipes she had forty years ago. And "Somebody's Everything" encapsulates the feelings that any hopeless romantic person has. My personal favorite is "The Lonesomes." Sure... it's "Blue Me" meets "Single Women." But it's also classic Dolly. The fluttery vocals. The great lyrics. And she could have made it sad and mawkish. But instead it's light and feathery. "Backwoods Barbie" was a long time coming... and it does deliver... maybe not as much as I wanted it to... but it packs a wallop nonetheless.


Born: January 19, 1946 in Locust Ridge, TN

Genre: Country

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

It's difficult to find a country performer who has moved from her country roots to international fame more successfully than Dolly Parton. Her autobiographical single "Coat of Many Colors" shows the poverty of growing up one of 12 children on a rundown farm in Locust Ridge, Tennessee. At 12 years old, she was appearing on Knoxville television; at 13 she was recording on a small label and appearing on the Grand Ole Opry. Her 1967 hit "Dumb Blonde" (which she's not) caught Porter Wagoner's ear, and...
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