Dolly Parton Announces Retirement from Touring to Prioritize Quality Time with Husband

Dolly Parton, a 77-year-old icon in both the country music scene and the realm of celebrities, is a well-known name. Hailing from Tennessee, she has achieved legendary status and, despite a lifelong career in performing and singing, has always enjoyed entertaining her countless fans.

However, the iconic superstar has recently made a formal announcement that she will be putting an end to touring, even as she continues to produce more music.

In a recent interview with Pollystar, Dolly Parton revealed that she has decided to retire from touring. She stated:

“I’ll do special shows here and there, now and then. Maybe do a long weekend of shows, or just a few shows at a festival. But I have no intention of going on a full-blown tour anymore.”

Dolly Parton, who rose to the pinnacle of global entertainment after a humble upbringing in poverty in the Appalachian Mountains, will undoubtedly be missed on the stage.

Despite her decision to retire from touring at the age of 77, the country music star Dolly Parton remains dedicated to creating music. Instead of being on the road, she plans to channel her energies into spending quality time with her cherished husband, Carl Thomas Dean.

Their love story began in 1964 when Dolly and Carl met outside the Wishy Washy Laundromat in Nashville, Tennessee. Dolly, at 18, and Carl, at 21, felt a connection from the start, with Carl recognizing something extraordinary in the young lady.

“My first thought was, ‘I’m gonna marry that girl,'” Dean expressed in a statement recounting the moment they met, as quoted by Entertainment Tonight. “My second thought was, ‘Lord, she’s good lookin’.’ And that was the day my life began. I wouldn’t trade the last 50 years for nothing on this earth.”

Dean, sitting in his pickup truck, couldn’t resist shouting at Dolly when he first saw her, as she recalled in a 1976 interview with the NY Times.

Although she initially turned down a date, Dolly later invited him over when she was babysitting her nephew just a few days later. This marked the beginning of a love story that has endured ever since.

In May 1966, Dolly and Carl exchanged vows in a private ceremony in Ringgold, Georgia. Despite her record label’s recommendation to postpone the wedding due to her burgeoning career, Dolly and Carl chose not to wait. Opting for a ceremony in Georgia ensured that local Tennessee press wouldn’t cover the event. The intimate gathering included only Dolly, Carl, and her mother.

Since that day, Dolly and Carl have remained deeply in love. In 2016, the couple marked their 50th anniversary, and in celebration, they decided to renew their vows.

Now, Dolly and Carl will have even more time to spend together. In her interview with Pollstar, Dolly shared insights into her touring experiences:

“I’ve done that my whole life, and it takes so much time and energy. I like to stay a little closer to home with my husband. We’re getting older now, and I don’t want to be gone for four or five weeks at a time,” Dolly explained. She added, “Something could happen. I would not feel right about that, if I were gone and somebody needed me. Or I would feel bad if I had to leave a tour if somebody got sick at home and needed me and then I had to walk out on the fans.”

Dolly also mentioned that her current music projects will be in the rock n’ roll genre, catering to her husband’s musical preferences. She had recently been nominated for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in May.

“When I got nominated for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, I thought, ‘Well, no better time to do it.’ I had always wanted to do it. My husband is a big hard rock ‘n’ roll fan, and for years I thought, ‘One of these days I’d like to do an album mainly just for him, just to kind of do it.'”

While actively working on her upcoming album, Dolly Parton is also immersed in her new NBC special, “Dolly Parton’s Mountain Magic Christmas,” which premiered on Thursday, December 1.

Describing the special, she explained, “It’s a show within a show. What we’re doing is focused on the dramatic side. It’s showing all the things that go on while you’re putting together a show. All the arguments you have with the producers, all the problems you have with the artists, all the problems you have with scenery falling down and all the things that go on backstage, people having to cancel and reschedule real quick… I wouldn’t consider me acting, because I’m just totally myself in this. I’m just Dolly all the way, I’m not playing a character.”

In addition to her television venture, Dolly is collaborating with actress-turned-producer Reese Witherspoon on an upcoming film titled “Run, Rose, Run.” The film is an adaptation of a novel with the same name, co-written by Dolly Parton and James Patterson.

Dolly Parton health

Dolly Parton has consistently served as a symbol of strength and resilience for many. However, her decision to avoid large-scale touring aligns with her own experiences and challenges from the past.

In the 1980s, Dolly faced health issues that persisted for years, yet she continued to prioritize her career over her well-being. At the age of 35, during the peak of her career, she faced a health crisis that resulted in her collapsing on stage in Indianapolis. It was during this time that the country icon was diagnosed with endometriosis. This chapter in her life serves as a reminder of the importance of listening to one’s body and recognizing warning signals, a lesson that has shaped her current approach to touring.

Endometriosis is characterized by symptoms such as pain, heavy periods, and fatigue, with the potential for the womb’s lining to grow on other organs. Despite experiencing these symptoms, Dolly Parton initially dismissed them as “female problems.” In 1982, her doctor advised her to take a break before a performance in Indianapolis, but she proceeded with the show against medical advice. Unfortunately, she collapsed on stage, prompting her to be flown to New York for consultation with doctors. Subsequently, her health challenges led to the cancellation of the remaining 30 dates of her 35-stop tour across the U.S. and Canada.

Shortly afterward, Dolly underwent a partial hysterectomy, a procedure that removes a part of the uterus.

Reflecting on that period, she admitted, “I was getting away with murder. I wasn’t watching what I ate, I wasn’t conscious of nutrition, wasn’t taking care of myself. I was working hard, and underneath I was a pile of personal and emotional problems.” This experience has undoubtedly influenced her current commitment to prioritize her well-being over an exhaustive touring schedule.

Enjoy your ‘retirement,’ Dolly! You have given us so much! Relax and just enjoy your life now! We will always love you.