by MK Scott -
SGN Contributing Writer
SHOWARE CENTER - KENT
September 21 @ 7:30pm (SOLD OUT)
Last month I was one of a dozen members of the LGBT press to be part of a live phone conference with the iconic, Dolly Parton. Dolly is in the middle of a concert tour. I had to ask Dolly, why she chose the ShoWare Center in Kent over the larger Key Arena, and she responded that this show is more ideal for a smaller audience. I told her to expect a sold out show with 95% LGBT. Dolly is also promoting her new album, Pure and Simple. Here are the highlights from the 20-minute LGBT press conversation.
Tell me why you think you've remained such an icon within the LGBT community after all these years?
DP: Oh, well, I'd like to think they know I love them, they know that I accept everybody for who they are. I have a lot of friends that I work with, you know, in the gay and lesbian, I have a lot of gay and lesbians in my family, I have friends, I have people in my, all my businesses. I just always, you know, I just love people. I don't even think about whether you're straight or gay. I just love you because I love you. But, I think people respond to that, too, I don't judge people, I think people should be allowed to be who they are and be allowed to love, exactly who they love. I just think that, that's the way it should be. We're all God's children and we all have the right to our own happiness, and so I've just always been loved for being accepting, I guess? I've always wanted people to accept me for what I am. I've always been, you know, persecuted for the way I look and all that. But I just, you know, I just care about the soul and the heart of the people.
How can the Country Music Industry be more tolerant of the LGBT Community?
DP: Well, I think though what really gets me a lot of times is that so many of the Country people and all that, they're you know, supposed to be good Christian people. And to me if they would exercise more of what the Bible says to love one another, to love your neighbor, and to not to judge and you know, and just to love. That's God's business, God is, you know, is the judge and I just, I think there is room for everybody to be more accepting of all people not just the Gay and Lesbians. You know there's just so much prejudice in the world, about so many people and for people being different. We're just all God's children, we're all His and we should love one another and accept one another. And I just always had that kind of faith and that kind of open heart and open love. And I just think people should just get over themselves and start you know, just thinking about what they're about and what would make this world a better place. And a good place to start would be to allow people to be free and happy in their own selves. You know, because I just can't imagine you can be happy judging and criticizing other people all the time. What kind of life is that? I'd rather just go with the flow and love everybody and maybe God will love me more for loving more.
Do you plan on taking your tour, or your latest album, on a nationwide Gay Pride Tour in 2017?
DP: Oh! Well, I hadn't thought about that, nobody asked me about that! I hadn't put any thought into it, sounds like a good idea. I don't - next year I'm probably going to take off and [I'll be] promoting, and with my TV shows. I'm going to produce TV shows and possibly be in a series. But I'm glad you loved the album! And I'd be happy to sing to anybody wanting to hear it. Especially, I have a lot of gay fans out there, so maybe I'll see you somewhere, whether it's on a whole tour or not, but we'll, we'll be doing some things here and there, now and then. Thank you for asking, thanks for inviting me!
You have inspired so many, so many songwriters. I want to know, what do you do when you get writer's block? Because we all get it and we all have our ways around it, but what do you do?
DP: Well you know what? I have never really thought that I've had a writer's block. I just, because I write all the time, I don't, don't feel like I have to write. There are times like, if I've been working, the only way that I, sometimes when I'm having to write on a project, like when I was writing '9 to 5,' and I had to come up with something all of sudden, if they changed the number on me when I was doing the musical, I'd be stalled. I would call it a writer's stall, more than a writer's block. I'd have, you know, it stalled me for like a day or so till, till I could gather my, rethink and all. But I just write all the time. I don't, like I said, write because I have to, I write because I want to. And I've been doing it since I was little, and so, I don't really, I've got, thousands of songs. I don't really feel desperate if I don't have one coming right out because I've got so many more laying there. I just pick 'em up and re-work 'em.
When you're doing your live shows, what kind of connection and interaction are you seeing with your live audiences, on this more stripped down pure album?
DP: Well, they just seem to love it. It actually seems to be a more intimate setting for me and for them. Seems like they can hear me better, they can concentrate better since there's not a lot of loud music, big productions, there's not a lot of things distracting in the background. So we're kind of pretty much focused on each other. I'm focused on them, and they're focused on me and they seem to be really liking it and I'm enjoying it myself. I'm, I'm enjoying not having to, you know, I've always loved my fans, I love singing with great musicians and singers. But, this has been actually nice, to where I could, I don't have to sing over, or sing too hard, you know force myself to rise to the, you know, sound and all that. So it's actually been very pleasant and enjoyable thing for me as well as the fans.
Where did you find this love that you keep putting out into the world for all of us?
DP: Aww, well that's very sweet. Well, I just love people. When I grew up, I grew up in a very spiritual family, my grandpa was a preacher, my mother was very open, you know, she loved people and we were taught to love each other. You know, in our family, we were taught to be good to our neighbors. We were taught to love people and so I think that it just comes from that open-hearted faith, you know. For me, I just always took the good parts of that when we would go to church. I believe in that through God, all things are possible and to love your neighbor as yourself, and to you know, just, I've just always just had a good time in this world. I don't know what we're all here for, but I'm gonna find out, what all I can do to make it. And part of that is just trying to love people and enjoy people and accepting everybody for who and what they are.
And when it got to me, I asked Dolly who her Dream Duet partner would be?
Dolly, without hesitation said 'Adele or maybe (her god-daughter), Miley (Cyrus).'
See Dolly Parton at the ShoWare Center in Kent, WA on Wednesday, Sept 21st. For tickets go to http://www.showarecenter.com/ and be sure to grab her new album, Pure and Simple, out now.
Check out the full interview on MK's podcast, 'It's FAB w/ MK Scott' only on itsfab.podomatic.com/
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