When I was asked to write a blog post on flashback Music Festival moments, I jumped at the possibility to profile my role model as a human being, Ms. Dolly Rebecca Parton.
As is well known around the CMA offices, I love Dolly Parton.
I was born and raised in Dolly’s hometown of Sevierville, Tenn., and the house I grew up in is literally a mile away from Dollywood. I could wax poetic all day about St. Dolly, as I call her, and all of her greatness, but let’s get down to business: Dolly’s few but fantastic appearances at Fan Fair/CMA Music Festival.
According to my best count, Dolly has performed at the Festival only six times: 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1998, and 2005. Here are some highlights:
1972 – Dolly joined the ranks of 115 other artists including Barbara Mandrell, Bill Monroe, Conway Twitty, Ernest Tubb, George Jones, Loretta Lynn, Tammy Wynette and Waylon Jennings for the very first Fan Fair.
1974- Fans in attendance at Fan Fair 1974 witnessed Country Music history as Porter Wagoner and Dolly Parton performed as a duo for what would be the last time in more than a decade.
1998- Dolly joined Lee Ann Womack during the Decca Records show to perform “Jolene.”
2005 – Dolly took to what is now known as the LP Field stage for the first time with help from the Grascals.
2010 – Dolly returns to the CMA Music Festival just to declare Dawn the best fan in the world. (Note: Not confirmed yet, but my fingers are crossed.)
Is there anyone else you would like for us to feature in Music Festival flashback? Leave your suggestions in the comments below!
UPDATE: I came across an old Nashville Banner article which says Dolly made a brief appearance at the 1980 CMA Music Festival to sign autographs.