The “Circle of Love” Between Dolly Parton and Jennifer Nettles


Not only will Jennifer Nettles reprise her role as Dolly Parton’s mother in the sequel to the successful TV movie Coat of Many Colors next month, she’ll also help bestow the Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award on the most famous daughter of Sevierville, Tennessee during next week’s CMA Awards show.

“With it being the 50th anniversary of the CMAs, it is a night of celebrating country music across the board, and who better to celebrate than the queen herself, you know?” Jennifer says. “It is surprising in some ways that they haven’t done it before, but also, how fantastic to, on such a special night, for it to be the 50th anniversary, to commemorate such a special artist within the country tradition who continues to go out. She’s touring, you know, right now? So to get to be a part of that tribute for her is gonna be really special for me as a singer/songwriter, and as a musician…”

When she asked for advice about honestly portraying her mother, Jennifer says Dolly told her Avie Lee Parton was simply “me without the glitter.” When it came time to play the matriarch of the clan again for the second movie, Jennifer says Dolly simply left it there.

“You know what? She is so gracious and is nothing but kind. So, no notes, only fierce praise and encouragement from her, which is nothing to sneeze at, when Dolly Parton is giving you the thumbs up on playing her mom.” 

You can catch Jennifer Nettles’ tribute to Dolly November 2 starting at 8 p.m. ET on ABC on the 50th Annual CMA Awards. Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love airs November 30 on NBC. Jennifer’s first solo holiday album, To Celebrate Christmas, comes out this Friday.

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