Dolly Parton recently opened up to The Guardian about why she refused to change her famous image for anyone.
She told the outlet, “My look came from a very serious place. That’s how I thought I looked best. Sometimes that’s worked for me, sometimes it can work against you. It took me probably years longer to be taken serious, but I wasn’t willing to change it, and I figured if I had the talent, it’d show up sooner or later.”
Her image, modeled after the “town tramp,” was so offensive to the men in her family that her grandfather physically punished her for it.
The “Jolene” singer said, “I was willing to pay for it. I’m very sensitive, I didn’t like being disciplined – it hurt my feelings so bad to be scolded or whipped or whatever. But sometimes there’s just that part of you that’s willing, if you want something bad enough, to go for it.”
The country icon didn’t only have to deal with bad behavior from the men in her family but elsewhere as well. Parton discussed that she faced sexual harassment along the way but “always knew how to put a man in his place without making him feel bad.”
She added, “I’m also strong as a boy – I know how to push you off and get the hell away from you.”