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Parton's first mainstream album in 17 years appeals to all her fans without sounding insincere or compromising. The title track, a fiddle-and-piano colored two-beat that's a sympathetic bit of autobiography, belies her campy doll-like cover pose. The debut single "Better Get to Livin'" is a page from her own upbeat canon, and when she's downhearted in the steel-guitar weeper "The Lonesomes" and the cocktail lounge arrangement "Made of Stone," she draws on the influence of earlier country queens like Kitty Wells and Patsy Cline. Parton's vocal tones remain equally pure, distinctive, and captivating over grinding six-string power chords as she blasts out Fine Young Cannibal's "Drives Me Crazy." She's especially affecting on a faithful rendition of Smokey Robinson's "The Tracks of My Tears." The bottom line is that Parton's one of America's greatest enduring vocal stylists, whether she's revisiting her roots in bluegrass or making commercial hay.--Ted Drozdowski
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Label:  Dolly Records
ArtistDolly Parton
Release Date:  February 26, 2008
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review by . February 26, 2008
posted in Music Matters
"Backwoods Barbie" does something remarkable; it takes you as a listener back to the Dolly of years past. What I enjoyed most about this album is how polished it sounds and how it doesn't sound like any 'popular' country albums out today. The songs sound like something from her older catalog, the instruments used echo true country music that's been replaced by the modern computerized voices and instruments and she sounds like she's having fun doing her first real country album in years. "Backwoods …
Backwoods Barbie
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