Dolly Rebecca Parton was born on January 19, 1946 in Sevierville, Tennessee and was the fourth child out of 12. Growing up her father was a construction worker and farmer, while her mother stayed at home to look after the children.
Despite her father working hard, Parton has always been honest about how poor her family was. They all lived together in a one-room cabin in the Great Smokey Mountains.
Parton played a huge part in church and at just six-years-old she began performing regularly. Her uncle gave her her first guitar when she was just eight.
It was from then that Dolly started singing. As she got older she performed on local TV and radio in the Eastern Tennessee area and when she was 10 she appeared on WBIR-TV and WIVK radio shows as well as The Cas Walker Show in Knoxville, Tennessee.
By the age of 13 Parton had her first ever gig at the Grand Ole Opry hotel where she met Johnny Cash. Cash gave her stage advice and encouraged her to follow her dreams.