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A podcast featuring our Smoky Mountain hometown hero just won a prestigious Peabody Award! These awards recognize excellence in storytelling. The podcast, called “Dolly Parton’s America,” is a 9-episode series about the life and legacy of Dolly Parton. We’ve gathered all the details about this recognition and the Dolly Parton podcast for you.
Dolly Parton Podcast Peabody Award Winner
Peabody Awards honor the most powerful and enlightening stories in television, radio and online media. The award was named for American businessman and philanthropist George Peabody. Among this year’s Peabody Award winners was “Dolly Parton’s America,” which is hosted by Jad Abumrad and gives listeners a glimpse into Dolly’s life and what she stands for. The Peabody Awards said they chose to honor the Dolly Parton podcast because it’s an “engaging reflection on Dolly Parton’s America.” It said that the podcast helps us understand what Dolly stands for, how different audiences find something meaningful in her songs and how she shapes her image to speak to different experiences. You can read the full reasoning behind why this podcast won a Peabody Award here.
Watch Dolly’s acceptance speech for the Peabody Award below!
About ‘Dolly Parton’s America’
In a world that seems so divided, there seems to be one thing people agree on and love: Dolly Parton. “Dolly Parton’s America” digs into why that’s the case with a personal, historical and musical rethinking of Dolly Parton. The 9-episode podcast features exclusive interviews with Dolly Parton and others who played a role in her legacy and impact on pop culture. It dives deep into Dolly’s stance on feminism, faith, immigration, workers’ rights, and what she believes is the American Dream. One of the reasons the podcast is so popular is because it allows listeners to learn more about Dolly than ever before. Learn more about the episodes below:
Episode 1: I Will Always Leave You – Tells the story of Dolly’s “Porter Wagoner years,” during which she discovered her power as a performer and songwriter.
Episode 2: Tennessee Mountain Trance – Talks about Dolly’s “Tennessee Mountain Home,” and dives into questions about country music, authenticity, nostalgia and belonging. It also mentions Dolly’s Tennessee Mountain Home at Dollywood.
Episode 3: Neon Moss – Dolly talks about her first trips out of her actual Tennessee mountain home and where she lives now.
Episode 4: Dollitics – Dolly Parton hasn’t always been vocal about politics. She refuses to answer any questions about politics because she knows half her fan base is on the right and half her fan base is on the left. This episode digs deep into this decision and if it’s desirable, or even possible.
Episode 5: The Only One for Me, Jolene – “Jolene” is one of Dolly’s most popular songs. Some see it as a classic cheating song, while others see it as “flipping a popular country music trope on its head.” This episode talks about this idea and gets listeners to reimagine Dolly’s songs in new ways.
Episode 6: Dolly’s Wildflowers: live music from the series – This episode features live music from Justin Hiltner, Esther Konkara, Steph Jenkins, Stephanis Coleman, Courtney Hartman, Shelley Washington, Bora Yoon and Caroline Shaw.
Episode 7: Dolly Parton’s America – This episode highlights a history class at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, Dolly Parton’s America. The class is full of students who grew up in rural Appalachia. They are given the assignment to answer the question “What is Dolly Parton’s America?”
Episode 8: Dixie Disappearance – This episode talks about the controversy surrounding Dixie Stampede and the decision to change the name to Dolly Parton’s Stampede.
Episode 9: Traveling Creatures: live music from the series – This is the second bonus music episode that includes two live songs by bluegrass musicians Nora Brown and Amythyst Kiah.
Listen to the Dolly Parton podcast to learn more about our favorite country music legend, and then check out these surprising facts about Dolly you might not know!