Andy Warhol’s Interview Interview: Dolly Parton

Published May 12, 2014

The glittery country goddess from Tennessee has won just about every award in music, and she deserves them all. Upon the release of her 42nd album in nearly 50 years, it’s clear that, in Dollywood, the workday is way longer than 9-to-5.

ANDY WARHOL: How many tubes of lipstick do you have ?

DOLLY PARTON: Just one, but it’s as big as a can of hairspray.

WARHOL: What kind of clothes do you like now?

PARTON: Same kind I have always liked: really tight and really sparkly. Never leave a rhinestone unturned.

WARHOL: Have you been to the White House?

PARTON: Yes! Several times with many different presidents. There’s nothing like white trash at the White House.

WARHOL: What did you have for breakfast?

PARTON: Well, this morning I had coffee, toast, and jelly. But I usually eat breakfast twice. I’m usually up at 3 a.m.—do my spiritual work, my affirmations, a little bit of songwriting, get my daily work in order, and by that time I’ve worked up a bigger appetite.

WARHOL: Do you keep a diary?

PARTON: I don’t have to. It seems like for the last 40 years my life has been lived in the press, so I can Google any date in my history and find out what I was doing.

WARHOL: How were you discovered?

PARTON: I got my first big break in Nashville on the Porter Wagoner show.

WARHOL: What was your first job?

PARTON: My first job was singing on the Cas Walker radio show in Knoxville, Tennessee. I was about 10 years old and I thought it was big time.

WARHOL: What’s the craziest thing a fan has sent you?

PARTON: A baby, a real live baby. Someone left a baby on our front doorstep with a note that they wanted us to raise it. Of course, we contacted the authorities and they took care of the baby.

WARHOL: Are you a good cook?

PARTON: If you like good ol’ fashion Southern soul food then, yes, I am a good cook! My specialty is chicken dumplings and poke salad.

WARHOL: Is there anything you regret not doing?

PARTON: Yes! His name is Jimmy.

WARHOL: Do you have any intimate secrets?

PARTON: Yes, and they will stay just that—intimate and secret.

WARHOL: Do you dance at home?

PARTON: I don’t dance anywhere. Have you seen my shoes?

WARHOL: Do you get depressed if you don’t work?

PARTON: I wouldn’t know. I haven’t stopped working since I was 10. But if I ever do, I’ll let you know.

WARHOL: Would you ever marry one of your fans?

PARTON: I did! And he is still my biggest fan for 50 years and counting.

WARHOL: What’s your favorite color?

PARTON: I have two—white and yellow. White makes me feel light and airy. Yellow makes me happy.

WARHOL: Do you have a dream role?

PARTON: Yes, the one I’m starring in now, and I hope I don’t wake up anytime soon.

IMAGE ABOVE: DOLLY PARTON.