Review: New Dolly Parton podcast brings hope to a divided nation


“Dolly Parton’s America” is a new 9-episode podcast about Dolly Parton’s life and influence on pop culture. It is created and hosted by Jad Abumrad, a US radio host and creator of the series Radiolab. (Christine De Carvalho / WYNC Studios)

When you think of country music, what do you envision? Perhaps a pickup truck, a man in his cups singing about heartbreak or big cowboy hats, over the years country music has changed dramatically as it transitioned from soulful, heart wrenching tunes and to the bostrious pop-inspired country of today. The constant, however, remains the reigning queen of country herself: Dolly Parton. Parton’s journey in professional music started at the age of 10 when she began to perform in her community and slowly worked her way up to a duet with Porter Wagner  in 1967, which launched the budding singer into stardom. 

Parton’s musical career is absolutely awe inspiring. Although she is a formidable fixture in the country music world, Parton’s music goes beyond the realm of country. In the new podcast “Dolly Parton’s America,” host Jad Abumrad extolls Parton’s impact on America throughout her entire career. The podcast spotlights the country star’s outlook on the world, the depth of her  music and her mission to heal the divide that afflicts America’s political climate. 

The podcast opens with Abumrad inviting the listener on a journey back to the 2016 presidential election when America was arguably its most divided in recent history. Despite the ideological rift, Parton toured across America and attracted audience members from all walks of life. Parton reaches the hearts of people all over America, reaching countless communities such our very own Redlands. With the 2020 election on the horizon, the extraordinary way that Parton can bring people together may just be what Redlands needs during this time of strife and division. “Dolly Parton’s America” is just a glimpse into just how beneficial Parton’s music can be for individuals of all walks of life.

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