Dolly Parton Addresses Rumors Of Being Gay With Judy Ogle, Talks New Memoir

  @nadinedeninnon.deninno@ibtimes.com on November 27 2012 9:27 AM
Dolly Parton
Dolly Parton Reuters

 

Dolly Parton is no stranger to rumors circulating over the years, namely one concerning being gay with longtime best friend Judy Ogle despite her marriage to Carl Dean.

But the 66-year-old country singer, who is not media shy, opened up during a recent interview with Nightline to put the rumors to rest as well as promote her memoir, "Dream More," which will hit shelves on Tuesday.

According to Parton, she and her childhood friend Ogle love each other but are not romantically involved, as she has been married to Dean for 46 years. She compared her love for Ogle to Oprah Winfrey's best friend Gayle King.

"Like Gayle, her friend, Judy, my friend, they just think that you just can't be that close to somebody," Parton said. "Judy and I have been best friends since we were like in the third and fourth grade… We still just have a great friendship and relationship and I love her as much as I love anybody in the whole world, but we're not romantically involved."

Parton also spoke about her relationships with men, since tabloids over the years have pegged her to nearly every man she's worked with on projects.

"I've... been accused of being involved with every man I'm ever seen with or worked with," she said. "Maybe I have, maybe I ain't. I never tell if I have. But you know people always saying that."

One thing about her career she was sure to dish about was the inspiration behind how she got her signature look as a voluptuous blonde with big hair and makeup: the town tramp.

"There was this woman, we won't call her names, but she was beautiful," she said of the woman in Sevierville, Tenn. where she grew up. "I had never seen anybody, you know, with the yellow hair all piled up and the red lipstick and the rouge and the high heeled shoes, and I thought, 'This is what I want to look like.'"

And her look has sparked fans worldwide. Having sold over 100 million records and held starring roles in several movies like "Steel Magnolias" and "9 to 5," Parton said she has become a sort of icon amongst her fans. For example, Parton herself told of a time she entered a Dolly Parton drag queen look-a-like contest.

"They had a bunch of Chers and Dollys that year, so I just over-exaggerated -- made my beauty mark bigger, the eyes bigger, the hair bigger, everything," she said. "All these beautiful drag queens had worked for weeks and months getting their clothes. So I just got in the line and I just walked across, and they just thought I was some little short gay guy.. but I got the least applause."

Now, with her book slated to hit shelves on Tuesday, Parton is leaving nothing a mystery. "Dream More" serves as a motivational memoir for Parton, who admits to having grown up in a cabin in Tennessee with 11 siblings before hitting it big in the country music scene.

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