The truth about Dolly Parton’s relationship with Porter Wagoner

Dolly Parton has had a remarkable career that has left her with an astounding net worth, elevating her to legendary status and transcending country music. But Parton rose to fame from unlikely circumstances, as she has a tragic history and had a difficult childhood. Nevertheless, she persevered in her quest to become a singer and, obviously, succeeded.

However, Parton made one very significant connection that really pushed her career to the next level. That special someone was Porter Wagoner, who had a famous show called The Porter Wagoner Show. In an interview with Vanity Fair from November 2020, Parton spoke about how she first met Wagoner.

Parton said the song “Dumb Blonde” from her first album, Hello, I’m Dolly, caught Wagoner’s attention. Parton said that, at that time, Wagoner had the “number one syndicated country show in the nation.” He lost one of his leading female singers and was looking for a replacement. Wagoner asked her to take the part and Parton joked that she only needed a split second to say “yes.” But this connection ultimately had a huge impact on her career.

Dolly Parton said she and Porter Wagoner were like 'fire and ice'

Dolly Parton joined Porter Wagoner on his popular country TV show in 1967, according to The Boot, and the decision was a fabulous one for her career. As Parton explained to Vanity Fair in November 2020, “It was really that show that got me over the moon as far as my career. That really started it all for me.” Just because it was a great career move, though, does not mean that her relationship with Porter was equally easy.

“My relationship with Porter was kind of up and down,” Parton said. “We collided all the time because we were both very strong-willed, very confident people.” She added that they were like “fire and ice,” and Parton noted that, although they fought a lot, there was also a lot of love between them.

Parton said when she first began on The Porter Wagoner Show, she only expected to stay a short time because she was not the type of performer who wanted to work in a group. However, she wound up staying with him for seven years, Parton told Vanity Fair. They parted on bad terms, Parton said, but thankfully, they managed to reconcile over the years and cherish the good things that came out of that serendipitous connection.

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