Dolly Parton is a larger-than-life figure. The most hored female country performer of all time, she's kwn as much for her songwriting as for her sequined outfits, big hair, foxy personality (her words), and her Nashville theme park, Dollywood. But beneath the sparkles and underpinning her success is an indomitable businesswoman, whose generosity and moral compass have contributed to her legendary status.Born into poverty in East Tennessee, Dolly got her first guitar at age eight and performed at Pentecostal churches before rising to prominence on The Porter Wagoner Show in 1967. Her career took off from there, and she became a multi-format star, writing and performing pop music as well as country songs, starring in films and musicals, and creating several successful business and charitable enterprises. Today, she is a household name, but certain aspects of her past and her current life--her marriage of nearly fifty years, in particular--remain closely guarded.In Smart Blonde, Miller pulls back the curtain. Through interviews with Dolly's family members, musicians, and producers, Miller explores her private life, including her relationship with her famously publicity-shy husband, Carl Dean, and her lifelong friendship with Judy Ogle. What emerges is a unique portrait of a strong woman who has consistently taken control of her life, her music, and her business--often against all odds--with determination and elan.
STEPHEN MILLER is the author of Johnny Cash: Life of an American Icon. He also reviews country music albums, books, and concerts, and has interviewed a variety of artists, for a weekly country music radio show on Scot FM.