Dolly Parton honoured as ‘saintly, even godlike figure’ by Miley Cyrus for Time 100 most influential list

‘Have you ever met anyone who doesn’t love Dolly Parton?’ country singer’s goddaughter asks

Roisin O'Connor
Thursday 16 September 2021 11:50
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Grammys 2019: Dolly Parton and Miley Cyrus sing 'Jolene' duet

Miley Cyrus has written a tribute to her godmother Dolly Parton for the annual Time 100 list of the world’s most influential people.

Cyrus, who has collaborated with Parton on many occasions, called the country music icon her “idol” and “the definition of a humanitarian”.

“Have you ever met anyone who doesn’t love Dolly Parton? I never have,” Cyrus began.

“Dolly is not only my idol because of her incomparable career – she’s also my role model because of her steadfast morals and values. At her core, she is the definition of a humanitarian.”

The 28-year-old continued: “She’s also the world’s most impeccably purposeful walking contradiction, having developed her iconic look after being inspired by the town tramp. Now she’s known as a saintly, even godlike, figure.”

Cyrus went on to observe how Parton had built an identity that had attracted attention to her signature blonde wigs, “lots of gingham and silicone”, yet the foundation was built on “her honesty, truth and her faith”.

“People look to Dolly for guidance, and she knows that. She wears that responsibility with the same grace and pride she rocks a two-piece Nudie suit,” Cyrus wrote. “She recognises how impactful her choices will be as one of the most iconic and powerful voices in country music, and she leaves no one behind.”

In the same piece, Cyrus praised Parton for her championing of the queer community, and for her charity work that includes her Imagination Library, providing millions of books for children.

“There’s a theory that you shouldn’t meet your heroes, but I wish everyone had the chance to meet Dolly Parton, because she’s even better than your sparkliest dreams,” Cyrus concluded. “She may be my fairy godmother, but I think she’s that to everyone else too. I am happy to share her with the world.”

Last year, Parton received adoration for donating $1m (£723,000) to help fund research for the Covid-19 vaccine programme during the early stages of the pandemic.

The musician, who received her jabs earlier this year, has remained modest about her contributions. In August, she said she believed she has received “more credit than I deserve” for the success of the Moderna vaccine.

Posting on Instagram, Parton said she was “so honoured” to be included in this year’s Time 100 list.

Also named as one of the year’s most influential people is Billie Eilish, who was praised in a piece by rapper Megan Thee Stallion.

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