Hungry Again

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Hungry Again
Studio album by
ReleasedAugust 25, 1998
RecordedFebruary 1998
  • Dolly Parton
  • Richie Owens
Dolly Parton chronology
Hungry Again
Trio II
Singles from Hungry Again
  1. "Honky Tonk Songs"
    Released: July 27, 1998
  2. "The Salt in My Tears"
    Released: November 9, 1998

Hungry Again is the thirty-fifth solo studio album by American singer-songwriter Dolly Parton. It was released on August 25, 1998, by Decca Records and Blue Eye Records. The album was produced by Parton and her cousin, Richie Owens. It is seen as a predecessor to Parton's critically acclaimed bluegrass trilogy, The Grass Is Blue, Little Sparrow, and Halos & Horns.


When Rising Tide Records closed its Nashville branch in March 1998, Parton found herself without a label. It was announced in April 1998 that Parton had signed with Decca Records to release her new album, Hungry Again, due to be released in August.[1]

Parton wrote the album over a three month period in 1997 at her lake cottage outside Nashville and at her Tennessee Mountain Home in Sevierville, which was immortalized in her 1973 hit song. Detailing the writing process for Billboard, Parton said, "I went back home and fasted, not so much in a religious way but as a means of humbling myself and getting into the spirit of things. I ended up with 37 of the best songs I'd written in years, if not the best ever." Parton said that the songs that made the album resulted in a "more acoustic-type album."[2] She also said that if the album was successful she had enough songs leftover for two or three follow-up albums, which she jokingly said might be titled Still Hungry, Hungry Some More, or I'm Full Now.[3]

The album was produced by Parton with her cousin, Richie Owens, and recorded in his basement studio with his band Shinola.[2] "Shine On" was recorded at the House of Prayer where Parton's grandfather, Jake Owens, had been pastor for many years.[4]

Release and promotion[edit]

Parton appeared on The Rosie O'Donnell Show on April 2, 1998, where she performed "Paradise Road."[5]

The album's first single, "Honky Tonk Songs", was shipped to country radio on July 7,[2] with an adds date of July 27.[6] The song's music video was put into Hot Shot rotation on CMT.[2]

Shelia Shipley Biddy, Decca's senior vice-president, told Billboard in July that the label had a "massive national plan" set up to support the album. The plan included a heavy emphasis on national TV appearances and servicing the album to radio. They also considered releasing the album to retail locations in a lunch-box which would include an apple-shaped notepad, a carrot-shaped ink pen, and a Dolly Madison cupcake.[2]

Parton made an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno on August 24 to promote the album, performing "Honky Tonk Songs".[7]

The album was released on August 25, 1998.

On August 28, she made an appearance on Today where she performed "Honky Tonk Songs" and "9 to 5".[8] Parton also stopped by Live with Regis and Kathie Lee on August 31 and performed the title track "Hungry Again".[9] On September 30, Parton appeared on Prime Time Country where she performed "Honky Tonk Songs", "When Jesus Comes Calling for Me", "I Am Ready", and "The Salt in My Tears".[10]

"The Salt in My Tears" was released as the second single on November 9.[11] Following the second single's release, Parton made a second appearance on Live with Regis and Kathie Lee on November 24 and performed "The Salt in My Tears".[12]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Robert Christgau(dud)[14]

The album received mostly positive reviews from critics. Billboard gave a positive review of the album, saying that "Parton returns to her close-to-the-heart, personal writing and singing with this basement album." They went on to say "it's arguably some of the best stuff she has done in years," while also taking note that "country radio resoundingly rejected the first single." They felt that this was because "listeners no longer welcome such overt drinking songs told by a woman aiming to get drunk and dance." The review ended by saying that "after all these years, Parton remains a potent and special voice in country music."[15]

Jana Pendragon at AllMusic gave the album four and a half stars out of five, calling the album "a timely, heartwarming project that displays all of the many aspects and facets of Parton's talent. She is endearing and respected, and she can still roll right over most anyone who gets in her way with a single note."[13]

Commercial performance[edit]

Hungry Again peaked at number 23 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart and number 167 on the Billboard 200.

The album also peaked at number 3 on the UK Country Albums Chart and number 41 on the UK Albums Chart.

The first single, "Honky Tonk Songs", peaked at number 74 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart and number 91 in Canada on the RPM Country Singles chart.

Track listing[edit]

All tracks are written by Dolly Parton

1."Hungry Again"3:24
2."The Salt in My Tears"3:54
3."Honky Tonk Songs"4:32
4."Blue Valley Songbird"4:23
5."I Wanna Go Back There"3:06
6."When Jesus Comes Calling for Me"2:49
7."Time and Tears"2:56
8."I'll Never Say Goodbye"3:14
9."The Camel's Heart"3:15
10."I Still Lost You"3:36
11."Paradise Road"3:11
12."Shine On"4:11
Total length:42:31


Adapted from the album liner notes.



  • Art Direction - Virginia Team
  • Design - Jerry Joyner
  • Photography: Matt Barnes, Jim Herrington, J.R. Rabourn, and Jason Pirro
  • Stylist - Susan Bessire
  • Hairdresser - Cheryl Riddle
  • Make-up - Paul Starr



Chart (1998) Peak
UK Albums (OCC)[16] 41
UK Country Albums (OCC)[17] 3
US Billboard 200[18] 167
US Top Country Albums (Billboard)[19] 23
Scottish Albums (OCC)[20] 57


Title Year Peak chart
US Country

"Honky Tonk Songs" 1998 74 91


  1. ^ "Country / Artists & Music / Nashville Scene" (PDF). American Radio History. Billboard. April 25, 1998. p. 30. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d e Bessman, Jim (July 25, 1998). "Decca's Parton Returns to Her Roots" (PDF). American Radio History. Billboard. p. 39. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  3. ^ Bessman, Jim (July 25, 1998). "Decca's Parton Returns to Her Roots" (PDF). American Radio History. Billboard. p. 43. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  4. ^ Flippo, Chet (June 27, 1998). "Lower Ticket Sales for Fan Fair Reflects Flat Tourism Biz; USO Honors Country Acts" (PDF). American Radio History. Billboard. p. 36. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  5. ^ "The Rosie O'Donnell Show - Episode dated 2 April 1998". IMDb. Retrieved November 12, 2019.
  6. ^ "Going for Adds - July 27, 1998" (PDF). American Radio History. Radio & Records. July 24, 1998. p. 71. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  7. ^ "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno - Episode #6.154". IMDb. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  8. ^ "Today - Episode dated 28 August 1998". IMDb. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  9. ^ "Live with Regis and Kelly - Episode dated 31 August 1998". IMDb. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  10. ^ "Prime Time Country - Episode dated 30 September 1998". IMDb. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  11. ^ "Going for Adds - November 9, 1998" (PDF). American Radio History. Radio & Records. November 6, 1998. p. 80. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  12. ^ "Live with Regis and Kelly - Episode dated 24 November 1998". IMDb. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  13. ^ a b Pendragon, Jana. "Hungry Again - Dolly Parton / Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved November 10, 2019.
  14. ^ Christgau, Robert. "Dolly Parton". Robert Christgau.
  15. ^ "Reviews & Previews" (PDF). American Radio History. Billboard. August 29, 1998. p. 28. Retrieved November 10, 2019.
  16. ^ "Dolly Parton | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  17. ^ "Official Country Artists Albums Chart Top 20". Official Charts Company. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  18. ^ "Dolly Parton Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  19. ^ "Dolly Parton Chart History (Top Country Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  20. ^ "Official Scottish Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 23 November 2023.
  21. ^ "Dolly Parton Chart History (Hot Country Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved September 25, 2018.
  22. ^ Canada, Library and Archives (July 17, 2013). "Results: RPM Weekly (Country Singles)". Retrieved July 25, 2019.