Will Dolly Parton Be On Beyoncé’s New Country Album?

While much of the music world debates Beyoncé’s pivot to country and what it all means (or whether it counts in the first place, which, yes it does, duh, stop being … you know), one of country’s biggest stars, Dolly Parton, has already given Bey her seal of approval. In fact, there’s some speculation online that she gave her much more than that, even contributing a collaboration to Beyoncé’s upcoming album, Act II, which is set for release on March 29. In a new interview with Tennessee’s Knoxville News Sentinel, Parton set the record straight on whether she’ll be on the new album or not.

“I think she’s recorded ‘Jolene,’” Parton mused. “I think it’s probably gonna be on her country album, which I’m very excited about.” So, it sounds like Dolly might on the project in spirit, at least, but she was careful to measure her enthusiasm by saying she “hopes” it’s there, a savvy move from a longstanding recording industry veteran who knows that anything can happen.

In regard to Beyoncé herself, Dolly gushed, “I love her! She’s a beautiful girl and a great singer.” She said she always wanted Beyoncé to cover “Jolene,” and said, “We’ve kind of sent messages back and forth through the years. And she and her mother were like fans, and I was always touched that they were fans, and I always thought she was great.”

Beyoncé wouldn’t be the first contemporary artist to cover “Jolene” in recent years; Miley Cyrus famously delivered a spirited take on it back when she was first reinventing herself in 2012, and in 2021, Lil Nas X performed the song for BBC’s Live Lounge show on YouTube.