It's no secret that Dolly Parton is one of our brightest Southern stars, and she is also one of the hardest-working queens of country music. From having number-one hits to starring in top-grossing movies, she is an icon of the stage and screen. You may know that the “Jolene” crooner has a big personality and big hair to match, but here are a few lesser-known facts to pique your interest about this living legend, who shows no signs of slowing down.
Born in a one-room cabin in 1946 in Sevierville, Tennessee, Parton released her first single when she was just 11 years old, proving she was destined for stardom at a young age. She made her debut on the Grand Ole Opry at age 13, where she was introduced by the “Man in Black” aka songwriter and guitarist Johnny Cash. She can play a slew of musical instruments, 10 to be more accurate, including the banjo, fiddle, piano, and electric guitar. The iconic performer and actress has written more than 5,000 songs—most notably “9 to 5,” “Coat of Many Colors,” and “I Will Always Love You,” which was covered by late iconic singer Whitney Houston for the Bodyguard soundtrack. Yet, with a natural penchant for playing instruments and writing songs, Parton cannot read sheet music. But, hey, neither could The Beatles, so she’s in good company. She received a Best Original Song nomination from the Academy Awards in 1981 for the song “9 to 5”, which was also the same title of the cult comedy film she starred in as Miss Doralee Rhodes, a secretary who hated her boss and devised a plan with her two female cohorts to get even with him. To learn more about the country music hall of famer, continue watching the video above.