Design By Humans
Published On: Wed, Oct 18th, 2017

Dolly Parton: I Believe in You

Dolly Parton
I Believe in You
(Sony Music Nashville)

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A train whistle, into a jaunty accordion begins “I Believe in You,” the title track, and opener to Dolly Parton’s new album. This is the country icon’s first ever music release exclusively for children, with all the proceeds from the album benefiting Dolly’s “Parton’s Imagination Library.”

The country star with the big assets (her voice and talent, what did you think I meant!?) is being slightly obvious here with the lyrics, maybe insipidly so. But Dolly has so much personality. The musicians here are top notch and the backing vocalists, kids among them, make these 14 tracks all sound good, at least.

A softer version of Dolly’s famous “Coat of Many Colors” is here. “I Am a Rainbow” floats along with its obvious lyric, as does the bugle-led Mexican-style tinged “Imagination” (the keys and bass stomp in the verse is especially fun), and “Makin’ Fun Is Funny.”

“Chemo Hero” is a light big upbeat number featuring Dolly trying to cover a touchy subject. With chants like “Bad cells, bad cells, “Lost my hair, but I don’t care” and those kids singing with Dolly, I’m just not sure this one accomplishes what Dolly is attempting. In fact, it kind of shoots wide and misses the mark. At least it’s short.

“Brave Little Soldier” has a marching snare beat behind what might be Dolly’s strongest vocals. Coming right after “Chemo Hero,” one wonders why Dolly is singing to us about being a brave shoulder. In line with its target audience, the album ends with Dolly reading “Coat of Many Colors.”

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Dolly Parton: I Believe in You