It’s not often that Dolly Parton is speechless. Ronnie McDowell managed to do that when he presented her a painting of the singer and Elvis.
The Backstory: Elvis Presley wanted to record Dolly’s song “I Will Always Love You.” Obviously Dolly was very excited about the prospect, but because of publishing issues with Elvis’ manager, Col. Tom Parker, the recording never came about.
Ronnie thought about that story for awhile and then he had the inspiration to paint a picture of Dolly and Elvis. He placed them at a picnic, with Dolly performing “I Will Always Love You” for him. They are sitting on a blanket in her hometown of Sevierville, Tennessee, and a music sheet with the words to the tune are in front of them. He frame the painting and called Dolly to tell her he had something for her.
“When the time came to reveal the big surprise, I took the cover off and Dolly’s expression was priceless and was followed by screams and more screams,” Ronnie says. “I filmed it and I’m so glad I did because it was magic.”
Ronnie says that once Dolly had a moment to compose herself, she exclaimed “Damn! I WISH I looked that good!”