Here's something you never hear: "I sure hate Dolly Parton." Even if you haven't got all her albums, you probably like a lot of her tunes, and you certainly like her. Everything she does is shtick (the best kind of shtick), and yet she's also completely genuine and sweet.
Information: Dolly Parton
Suggested first purchase/best of: The Essential Dolly Parton
Suggested first album: Jolene
The Grass Is Blue (1999) -- Dolly's "comeback" album was in the form of a bluegrass album, just as that genre was experiencing a renaissance, one of the key players -- Alison Krauss -- being present here. The entire album is very pretty and very Dolly, my favorite track being "Silver Dagger."
Little Sparrow (2001) -- The second bluegrass album is a little less haunting and "blue" than the first, but still very good. Dolly pulls a Johnny Cash on this one by covering Collective Soul's "Shine" and creating a version that I actually like. The title song is also a standout.
Halos and Horns (2002) -- At age 56, Dolly's still as sexy and sweet as ever. (Check out the album cover.) Halos and Horns is the third of her bluegrass acoustic albums and is another good one, this time featuring "Stairway to Heaven," a song that seems like it would be impossible to cover successfully, but she's done it.
The Essential Dolly Parton (2005) -- Dolly was right when she said this collection was like her entire career in one place. It's the only compilation I know about that does that, since most of them focus on one period or another. The first disc is the 60s and 70s and the second is the 80s and 90s, and one is as good as the other. Dolly had a crazy amount of hits and 37 of them are represented here, including my favorites "I Will Always Love You," "Here You Come Again," "9 to 5," "Islands in the Stream," and "Why'd You Come In Here Lookin' Like That."
The Acoustic Collection: 1999-2002 (2006) -- Collects Dolly's three bluegrass albums -- The Grass Is Blue, Little Sparrow, and Halos and Horns -- and throws in a bonus DVD. If you haven't got any of these albums yet and you want them, might as well get this. The packaging is cute too.
Copyright (c) Jan 2007 by Rusty Likes Music