It was already known that Dolly Parton will always love you. Well, now the Queen of Country wants to rock you too.
And some of rock’s most celebrated producers are now clamoring to produce a headbanging Dolly album – to fulfill their wish to conquer the genre.
“There’s probably nobody in the entire music business who wouldn’t jump at the opportunity to work with Dolly Parton, so putting it together would just be the easiest thing,” classic rocker Todd Rundgren told The Post.
When Parton dropped out to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame this year — “I don’t feel like I’ve earned that right,” she said in an Instagram post — she revealed, that she hopes to one day be “worthy” of another nomination.
“It inspired me…to put out a hopefully great rock ‘n’ roll album at some point in the future, which is something I’ve always wanted to do!” she said.
And if Johnny Cash could work with Rick Rubin and Loretta Lynn with Jack White, then Parton could certainly get some rock love.
Rundgren – who was not only accepted as an artist into RRHOF last year, but has also produced everything from Badfinger and the New York Dolls to Meat Loaf’s Bat Out of Hell – would love to work with Parton behind the scenes. “Who wouldn’t?” Rundgren, 73, said.
“She’s made so many records, has so much experience, you know there’s not going to be any weird stuff about it. I would just bring anyone in the world who ever wanted to play with Dolly Parton… from Heart to Joan Jett to Pearl Jam to Greta Van Fleet, for goodness sake.”
And Rundgren knows exactly what kind of record he wants to make with Parton: “The point is first and foremost to make a real rock album,” he said. “If you want to make a rock album, make a rock album. Don’t bob around the edges. But do it like Dolly would. Don’t try to do anything funny with her voice or anything like that, try to tell the world [she’s] hard or something. There is no need for that.”
Renowned producer Steve Albini – who worked on Nirvana’s classic In Utero – has also thrown his hat in the ring to rock with Parton. “Dolly Parton, do you like analogue recording?” He tweeted in response to the legend’s request for her dream album.
At the very least, the woman who wrote classics like “Jolene,” “9 to 5,” and of course, “I Will Always Love You” has certainly won some fans in rock circles by respectfully withdrawing from the RRHOF competition.
“I think it was a really stylish move,” Judas Priest guitarist Richie Faulkner – whose band is also a Rock Hall nominee this year – told the podcast Rock of Nations With Dave Kinchen. “I think she recognizes her brand and she didn’t necessarily fit into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. And I think it also raises questions about what the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame brand is.”
Rundgren himself did not attend last year’s induction ceremony because of his own issues with the institution. “It never felt right for me either,” he said. “As an institution, I don’t take it very seriously and never have. So everyone knows that.”
And he stands by Parton’s decision to pull out of the race: “She’s actually doing them a favor in a way,” he said. “Because whatever their original mandate was … I knew at the time that they were running out of legitimacy [rock] Eventually nominated.”