The Fairest of Them All (album)

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The Fairest of Them All
Studio album by Dolly Parton
Released February 1, 1970
Recorded October - November 1969, RCA Studio "B", Nashville
Genre Country
Length 27:50
Label RCA
Producer Bob Ferguson
Dolly Parton chronology
My Blue Ridge Mountain Boy
The Fairest of Them All
As Long as I Love
Singles from The Fairest of Them All
  1. "Daddy Come and Get Me" / "Chas"
    Released: December 1969
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[1]

The Fairest of Them All is the fifth solo studio album by Dolly Parton, released in February 1970 by RCA Records.

Included is "Down from Dover," a song about the misfortune of a pregnant unwed girl, who waits in vain for the father while being shunned by her parents. The song was controversial for the times and Parton has stated in recent interviews that mentor (and uncredited producer) Porter Wagoner told her that she'd never get played on the radio with story songs like that. The song remains a fan favorite to this day and was re-recorded by Parton for Little Sparrow with an additional verse that was cut from the original. In 2009, Marianne Faithfull recorded the song for her covers album, Easy Come, Easy Go.

Two other story songs, "Robert" and "Daddy Come and Get Me" are distinctive for their themes. The former tells the story of a boy infatuated with a girl, not knowing that they are brother and sister. The story is a true story based on Parton's life. (Her father had several children with other women.) The latter is a haunting tale, (co-written with Dorothy Jo Hope, Parton's aunt) about a woman begging her father to release her from the mental institution that her cheating husband placed her in.

In a CMT interview with Patty Loveless, Parton joked that it was about the funniest cover she had ever made, with the largest collar she could find. She said was trying to look like a fairy tale character. The cover photo was by Bill Goodman, a photographer for The Nashville Banner.

The liner notes for the album are written by longtime Parton assistant, friend, and confidante Judy Ogle.

This album was released on CD for the first time on August 17, 2010, along with 1972's My Favorite Songwriter: Porter Wagoner.

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Daddy Come and Get Me"   Dolly Parton, Dorothy Jo Hope 3:01
2. "Chas"   Dolly Parton 2:24
3. "When Possession Gets Too Strong"   Dolly Parton, Louis Owens 2:04
4. "Before You Make Up Your Mind"   Bill Owens 2:10
5. "I'm Doing This For Your Sake"   Dolly Parton 2:11
6. "But You Loved Me Then"   Dolly Parton 1:52
Side two
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Just the Way I Am"   Dolly Parton 2:28
2. "More Than Their Share"   Dolly Parton 2:20
3. "Mammie"   Dolly Parton 3:11
4. "Down from Dover"   Dolly Parton 3:46
5. "Robert"   Dolly Parton 2:39

Chart position[edit]

Chart (1970) Peak
U.S. Top Country Albums 13


External links[edit]