The Original Backs Tweaks to 'Jolene' by Beyonce

'Cowboy Carter' includes a recasting of Dolly Parton's 1973 classic
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 29, 2024 5:00 PM CDT
The Original Backs Tweaks to 'Jolene' by Beyoncé
Dolly Parton appears onstage at Dollywood's Season Passholder and Media Day on March 9 in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.   (Photo by Amy Harris/Invision/AP)

The latest review of Beyonce's new crossover album comes from a member of the country music and rock and roll halls of fame. The album includes Dolly Parton's 1973 classic "Jolene," but with a different structure and some different lyrics, Variety reports. On Friday, the day the album was released, Parton said she approves of Beyonce's take on Cowboy Carter. "Wow, I just heard Jolene," Parton posted on X. "Beyonce is giving that girl some trouble and she deserves it!"

The recast version picks up where Beyonce left off on "Becky with the good hair" in her 2016 song "Sorry." Parton introduces the track, per Rolling Stone, saying, "Reminded me of someone I knew back when, except she has flaming locks of auburn hair"—referencing the 1976 lyrics. Tone is another difference. Parton pleaded with and begged Jolene not to take her man. Beyonce is more confrontational, issuing what she calls a warning. More direct is the line, "Your peace depends on how you move, Jolene." The lyric video of the new version can be heard here. The original, with lyrics, is here. Before all this, Parton helped Mindy Smith with this version. (More Dolly Parton stories.)

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