Dolly Parton is so famous for her over-the-top style and big persona, it's easy to forget how often she shares the spotlight. In fact, the seven-time Grammy winner is and always has been an eager collaborator with her fellow performers. Here's a look at some of Parton's finest (and funniest) duets.
'Jolene' with Miley Cyrus, 2010
Back when Cyrus had flaming locks of auburn hair, she teamed with her godmother for a twerk-free performance of Parton’s 1974 country classic about a heartsick woman whose man is falling for the enchantress in the song’s title. Is it crazy to hope that Parton covers a Cyrus song in exchange? "The Climb" would be perfect for Parton's pipes.
'If Teardrops Were Pennies' with Porter Wagoner, 1973
Parton first shot to fame in the 1960s as a recurring player on Wagoner's weekly musical variety show. The two collaborated for years before Parton decided to go solo, which led to legal wrangling and a nasty public spat. In that sense, this early duet, about the wish turn heartache into riches, seems prescient. Fortunately, Wagoner and Parton rekindled their friendship before Wagoner's death in 2007.
'Hey, Good Lookin'' with Pee-wee Herman, 1987
Parton paid a special visit to Pee-wee's colorful playhouse in a skit on her 1980s variety show. In this clip, Parton sits on Chairy, opens a handmade gift and watches as Pee-wee (Paul Reubens) whips up an invisible pretend meal. "That means there's no calories!" Parton says cheerfully. Then the two sing Hank Williams' country classic, with backup vocals from the singing flowers in the window.
'No One Picks Like a Nashville Picker Picks' with Carol Burnett, circa 1979
In this clip from a TV special filmed at Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry, Parton tries to coax Burnett into banjo picking. The comedian scoffs that she's not good enough. “Oh, Carol, you should feel inferior,” Parton coos to her pal. Audience members laugh, but Parton is being humble. “You should (feel inferior),” she continues, “because you do realize that Nashville has the greatest pickers in all the world, and I feel inferior to them.” Parton’s masterful plucking — and the duo's sweet harmonies — prove those fears were unfounded.
Untitled freestyle rap with Queen Latifah, 2012
While promoting her 2012 film "Joyful Noise" on the music-video countdown show "106 & Park," Parton showed she's not just a country crooner. In a performance that's part duet, part rap battle, co-star Latifah beatboxes while Parton spits rhymes: "I know your gang is mean, but let me warn you, Queen: Don't mess wit me 'cuz I'll be right on top o' ya," Parton raps. "I know your gang is rough, but you ain't never seen tough 'til you mess with the redneck mafia."
'Everything's Beautiful (In Its Own Way)' with Willie Nelson, 1984
Though Parton originally penned this track in the late ‘60s, it remained in the vault until 1982's “Winning Hand" album. Here she performs the hit with Willie Nelson (who also appeared on the studio version) against a backdrop of sweet-faced children. No country caricature in this case: Parton’s lyrics are plainspoken and earnest, set to a wistful melody that showcases her songwriting chops.