Back in early September, Time Out sent me to Brooklyn to cover Dollypalooza, the "epic fan tribute" to singer Dolly Parton. If I'm honest with myself, I expected this to be a strange night, with drag queen dancers and Dolly Parton singalongs on the schedule. And it was! But in a really, really positive way!
What I didn't realize going in, was that Dolly Parton's whole deal is about self-empowerment and working hard to get what you want and deserve. And that's a message that should resonate with everyone, but especially people who don't wear so neatly the labels our culture likes to place on our bodies and sexuality and so on. There was so much joy and camaraderie in the air that I could see smiles everywhere around me. And when they did the final singalongs in the end, "I Will Always Love You," and "9 to 5," the room was thundering with voices.