Dolly Parton

Dolly Parton says hello to TODAY: 'I'm as old as yesterday but hopefully as new as tomorrow'

May 13, 2014 at 10:25 AM ET

As a legend in her own time, with over 50 years in the music business, Dolly Parton could be forgiven if she wanted to rest on her laurels. Instead, the country music singer, songwriter and actress has just released her 42nd album, "Blue Smoke," and is in the middle of a world tour. During a visit to TODAY Tuesday, Parton said she won't be slowing down anytime soon.

"It's just amazing to me, how I came from back when we started in the music business. ... And now it's just everything is all this high tech," the stylish singer grinned, done up in her traditional blonde wig, a sparkly formfitting top and cropped pants festooned with spangled fringe. "I've just been dragged screaming and kicking into the 21st Century. ... It's wonderful that I'm still here. I say I'm as old as yesterday but hopefully as new as tomorrow."

Perhaps her sense of humor keeps her young: Following a plaza performance of her 1980 hit "9 to 5," TODAY's Matt Lauer pointed out a Dolly drag impersonator in the audience. Parton quipped that sometimes when she sings "Jolene," she changes the lyrics to "drag queen."

The singer also stuck around to share a live performance of the title track from her new album, along with the new song "Home."


Her new tunes aren't the only reason Parton is smiling; her personal life is harmonious, too. Married to the same man, Carl Thomas Dean, for 48 years, Parton says the union has lasted despite the fact that Dean is not fond of her music. 

"I know every line in his face and he knows every hair in my wig," grinned Parton. "(He's) not particularly (a fan of my songs), but he loves me. He loves me."

"Blue Smoke" is now available for purchase and download.


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