Dolly Parton Reveals Duets With Paul McCartney, Elton John, Brandi Carlile, Pink, Lizzo and More in 30-Song Track List for ‘Rockstar’ Album
Dolly Parton has revealed all the pertinent details about her long-promised “rock album,” titled “Rockstar,” including a 30-song track list, Nov. 17 release date and literally dozens of celebrity guests — including Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr joining her for a cover of the Beatles’ “Let It Be.”
The vast majority of the 30 tracks on the fall release will include at least one feature from a big-name artist, and in some cases two. Brandi Carlile and Pink will be joining Parton on the Rolling Stones’ “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” while Emmylou Harris and Sheryl Crow will be her guests on a song most popularized by Linda Ronstadt, “You’re No Good.” The force of metal will be strong on the song “Bygones,” where Judas Priest’s Rob Halford and Motley Crue members Nikki Sixx and John 5 will join her crew. Lizzo and Sasha Flute will put some wind into her sails on Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven,” even as Steven Tyler and Warren Haynes put their heads together with the Jackson 5 cover “I Want You Back.” And the aforementioned “Let It Be” won’t just include the two surviving Beatles; it’ll also feature turns from Peter Frampton and Mick Fleetwood.
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Roughly half the tracks have artists joining forces with Parton on songs they originated, like not just the ex-Beatles with “Let It Be” but Miley Cyrus with “Wrecking Ball,” Elton John with “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me,” Debbie Harry with Blondie’s “Heart of Glass,” Joan Jett with “I Hate Myself for Loving You,” Frampton with “Baby, I Love Your Way,” Ann Wilson with Heart’s “Magic Man,” Steve Perry with Journey’s “Open Arms,” Sting with the Police’s “Every Breath You Take,” Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo with “Heartbreaker,” Kevin Cronin with REO Speedwagon’s “Keep on Loving You” and Linda Perry with 4 Non-Blondes’ “What’s Up?”
Others joining the party with featured appearances on the album include Stevie Nicks, Chris Stapleton, Simon Le Bon, John Fogerty, Melissa Etheridge, Michael McDonald, Richie Sambora, Ronnie McDowell, the Jordanaires and — in what will surely be the most polarizing inclusion — anti-trans activist Kid Rock.
One contributor has died since recording a part for the album — Lynyrd Skynyrd guitarist Gary Rossington, who sat in on the closing track, “Free Bird,” along with singer Ronnie Van Zant and original Skynyrd drummer Artimus Pyle. Rossington died March 5.
The first single from the album, “World on Fire,” will be released Thursday night, following Parton’s live premiere of the tune at the end of the Academy of Country Music Awards, which she is co-hosting with Garth Brooks. (“World on Fire” is one of just three tracks on the 30-song collection not to have any celebrity guests, the other two being her covers of “Purple Rain” and “We Are the Champions.”)
Nine of the 30 songs on “Rockstar” are originals, and the other 21 are covers of familiar material.
The Nov. 17 release will come out on Parton’s own Butterfly label with distribution through Nashville’s Big Machine Label Group. A four-LP version will be available in nine different colors of vinyl with five different covers. It will also be sold as a two-CD set as well as up for digital sales and streaming.
“Rockstar” makes good on a vow Parton made to record a rock-themed album after she was nominated for and elected into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, with the country-pop superstar saying she would feel better about her induction if she had a full rock album to her name.
Although Parton will be promoting the album on the ACM Awards this Thursday, its release date a full six months from now could allow her to plug the release on another big country awards shows, the CMAs, which will be held not long before the Nov. 17 release date.
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