Country music legend Dolly Parton and four-time Grammy Award winner Olivia Newton-John recorded a powerful duet of 'Jolene' for Newton-John's final album.
The passing of Olivia Newton-John in 2022 marked the end of a remarkable career in the music and film industry. She is best known for her role in the classic film, "Grease," but she was also a four-time Grammy Award winner who recorded 15 top-ten singles. In fact, she is the only non-American-born artist to have won the Country Music Association Female Vocalist of the Year award, which led to a long-lasting friendship with country music legend Dolly Parton. Now, the two have released a powerful duet of "Jolene," marking Newton-John's final recording.
Parton and Newton-John's friendship goes back to the 1970s. Parton recalls her first memory of Newton-John being when her song "Let Me Be There" was a hit. From that moment on, Parton was a fan. In 1976, Newton-John recorded a version of Parton's "Jolene" for her album "Come On Over." The song became a staple of Newton-John's live performances throughout her career and allowed her to showcase her impressive vocal range.
According to MY MODERN MET, although the two were connected by their mutual love of music, they did not record any duet until much later. Newton-John shared in an interview in 2021 that she had always wanted to record with Parton. "She was always there for me, and what she did for me early on in my career in Nashville is something I will never forget," she said.
Finally, Newton-John's wish came true with the recording of "Jolene" for her final album, "Just The Two of Us." The album features 17 tracks and is set to release on May 5, 2023. "Jolene" serves as the first single of the album, which also includes appearances by Mariah Carey, John Travolta, and Newton-John's daughter, singer Chloe Lattanzi.
Parton fondly remembers the last time she sang with Newton-John on "Jolene," which she recorded for an album not long before her passing. "I cannot wait to hear that album, and Olivia, may you rest in peace. You left a spot that no one else will ever fill," she said.
Newton-John's longtime publicist, Michael Caprio, called the duet "the perfect bookend to their decades-long friendship," given their history together. "Knowing that Dolly was there at the start of Olivia's U.S. country music career, and here she is, one half of a duet on Olivia's final recording, is pretty special."
Her music and films continue to touch the hearts of fans all around the world. Her final recording, a duet with her longtime friend Dolly Parton, serves as a beautiful tribute to their friendship and Newton-John's legacy. The album, "Just The Two of Us," promises to be a remarkable collection of songs from a truly unique artist.