There’s a song Dolly Parton sings at virtually every show she does — and no, I’m not talking about “Jolene.” While that smoldering infidelity-heartbreaker might be what springs to mind for many people, the song in question is a much quieter, simple story. It’s called “Coat Of Many Colors,” and like many of her other tracks, it draws from Dolly’s own memories.
Parton and her family notoriously grew up dirt-poor in the Tennessee mountains, and Parton’s mother did what she could to keep her children clothed as cheaply as possible. Of course, this included stitching together old scraps to make something new, hence the “Coat Of Many Colors,” which drew bullying from the other children at Dolly’s school and led to her mother’s “rich in love” sermon. Many of us probably heard that one growing up, but few turned it into part of their own positivity-driven empire like the one Parton currently presides over.
It turns out that little domestic sermon resonated with a lot of people, because when Dolly decided to turn that song into a movie, 13 million viewers decided to tune in and watch. As the old country saying goes — if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.