Dolly Parton was one of 12 children and she broke into a notoriously misogynistic country scene in the 1960s, so she is perhaps the world’s preeminent expert on making her voice heard. In a new interview with Hollywood Life, she sang the praises of Britney Spears and Taylor Swift, applauding one’s triumph over an abusive conservatorship and the other pushing back against insults from Damon Albarn, saying, “You have to stand up for yourself.”
“I really get rubbed wrong sometimes when people mistreat the artist. I don’t like that,” she said. “I don’t like to judge other people and their problems, but when all that stuff that happens, like with Britney Spears — when they get [wrapped up in] controversy like that, you have to kind of stand up for yourself.”
She also defended Swift, who Albarn had incorrectly dismissed as someone who “doesn’t write her own songs.” Swift responded, “You don’t have to like my songs but it’s really fucked up to try and discredit my writing.”
Parton weighed in. “I don’t care what other people say about my songs. But with Taylor, she’s a great writer — with or without anybody.”
As for Albarn’s complaint that Swift was merely co-writing, Parton replied, “It’s not true. When you co-write a song, you work just as hard. Sometimes you work harder with a co-writer because you want to be sure to do your part.”
“I think she’s done great,” Dolly said of Swift. “And that’s one of the things I admire about her because she’s never sold herself. She’s never felt like she’s had to sell her body. She’s always had good taste in how she’s presented herself and with her songs. And she’s very creative and very, very, very smart in the marketing of her life. She knows who she is and what she wants. And I’m the same way. I’m going to fight if it goes against what I feel is not right for me.”
Parton’s new album Run, Rose, Run will drop March 4th. It’s the companion piece to her novel of the same name, which is co-written with James Patterson. Meanwhile, Swift was just named Ambassador for Record Store Day 2022, and Spears continues to spar with her family, even filing a restraining order against her sister Jamie Lynn.