The third week of January is always one of my favorites in my work as I get to write about and celebrate Dolly Parton’s birthday (1/19). Her birthday has become “Dolly Parton week” in Nashville and anywhere her millions of fans are located.

I love diving back into one of the reasons I fell in love with country music in the first place, not long after seeing the movie 9 to 5 in the movie theater and wanting to know more and more about the wonderful Parton.

When I was a teenager, the way to get good seats to see your favorite music stars in concert was sleeping outside at night in line at the box office to be first in line when the box office opened. I did just that in January in the cold of Salt Lake City, Utah, waiting to get tickets to see Dolly in concert with Kenny Rogers. The feat paid off as I sat in the first row of the show, singing every word.

In the many interviews I have done with Parton since I moved to Nashville, I never confessed to her my devotion and sacrifice to see her the very first time. However, it was those early days and my teenage years of devotion that made me appreciate her work so much.

As we celebrate her birthday this week (1/19), I dove into her many music videos and because of when my love for this icon began in the 1980s and 1990s, a couple videos from my list of her best videos are from that time period. Before we look at the five videos, I wanted to highlight two of her most recent music videos from her 2023 Rockstar album.

“We are The Champions/ We Will Rock You” (2023) – This video came out and focused on her covers of two Queen classics.

Another video I must mention from Rockstar is the one she did with Linda Perry, covering Perry’s 4 Non Blondes song “What’s Up?” Perry appears with Parton in the video, playing guitar and singing along in the chorus. It’s also fun to see Parton wearing jeans, which she rarely does.

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  • "Real Love" (1985)

    This music video shows footage and moments of Dolly and Kenny Rogers when they toured together for a few years in the early 1980s. It is to be cherished; although they recorded together many times, the music icons only toured together in the 1980s.

  • "Silver Threads And Golden Needles" (1993)

    This music video is also a gem. It is the only music video to feature Parton with fellow country music Queens and icons Tammy Wynette and Loretta Lynn, who have both since passed. The beginning of the music video shows a fun clip of music and guitar icon Chet Atkins trying to get backstage to see the country queens. The security guard says, “I don’t care if you are Chet Atkins, you can’t get in,” and Chet replies, “I am Chet Atkins.” It was Atkins who first signed Dolly to a RCA recording contract in the 1960s.

  • "Why'd You Come In Here" (1989)

    This fun video starts with Dolly auditioning men to play her leading man in the video, and it’s pretty funny. At one point, a car salesman auditions just to meet her, and she quips, “I think you’re real cute.” The video starts after he says, “Dolly, is that you?” This is just pure fun.

  • "Jesus & Gravity" (2006)

    This is one of Dolly’s songs that I always thought should have been a big hit. It was one of the rare songs not written by Parton. The music video, shot in black and white, shows Parton singing as well as scenes of people overcoming obstacles in their lives.

  • "Better Get To Livin'" (2007)

    Broadway actress and movie star Kristin Chenoweth plays in this video that is circus-themed and shows Parton dressed as a circus conductor advising women to “get to living.” In true Dolly style, the song shows a positive attitude toward life, something she has always possessed.

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