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The Essential Dolly Parton, Vol. 1: I Will Always Love You

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Dolly Parton 3/28/1995

Review

This set kicked off RCA's long-overdue "essential" reissue series with a package by country's best-known ambassador, Dolly Parton. The volume one imprint on the album implies that there will be another Parton set, which is good news, considering that this set is geared toward her late-'70s and thereafter pop recordings. Parton fans must demand a respectful set featuring Parton's very early hits, when she was hungry to establish herself -- songs like "Mule Skinner Blues," "Try Being Lonely," "Joshua," "She Never Met A Man (She Didn't Like)," "Coat of Many Colors," "Touch Your Woman," "Dumb Blonde," "The Bargin Store," or "Just Because I'm a Woman." And how about throwing in a couple of Porter Wagoner duets like "If Teardrops Were Pennies" or "Please Don't Stop Loving Me" for good measure? That those tracks aren't included here shouldn't inhibit anyone from picking this set up. There's not a rotten apple in this bunch. There's the 1982 version of her 1974 country smash "I Will Always Love You," which was used in the film The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas; the equally familiar "Islands in the Stream" duet with Kenny Rogers; and the title song from the 1980 film 9 to 5. The rest of the material is divided between what RCA hoped to cross over to the pop charts and what they planned to program to Parton's base country audience. Of the former there is the spirited "Think About Love" and the all-out MOR ballads "Starting Over Again" and "You're the Only One." As for the latter, there are the fun, snappy "Do I Ever Cross Your Mind," "Sweet Summer Lovin'," and "Heartbreak Express," among others. ~ Bil Carpenter
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  1. # Track Artist Length
  2. 1 9 to 5 Dolly Parton 2:43
  3. 2 Single Women Dolly Parton 3:43
  4. 3 Think About Love Dolly Parton 3:26
  5. 4 But You Know I Love You Dolly Parton 3:18
  6. 5 Do I Ever Cross Your Mind Dolly Parton 4:3
  7. 6 Real Love Dolly Parton 3:57
  8. 7 You're the Only One Dolly Parton 3:18
  9. 8 Sweet Summer Lovin' Dolly Parton 3:17
  10. 9 Heartbreak Express Dolly Parton 3:14
  11. 10 Tie Our Love (In a Double Knot) Dolly Parton 3:21
  12. 11 Islands in the Stream Dolly Parton 4:7
  13. 12 Two Doors Down Dolly Parton 3:2
  14. 13 God Won't Get You Dolly Parton 4:12
  15. 14 Don't Call It Love Dolly Parton 3:20
  16. 15 To Daddy Dolly Parton 2:38
  17. 16 Starting over Again Dolly Parton 3:55
  18. 17 Tennessee Homesick Blues Dolly Parton 3:21
  19. 18 Save the Last Dance for Me Dolly Parton 3:45
  20. 19 Old Flames (Can't Hold a Candle to You) Dolly Parton 3:23
  21. 20 I Will Always Love You Dolly Parton 3:5

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