"Jolene" is a song written and performed by American country music artist Dolly Parton. It was released in October 1973 as the first single and title track from her album of the same name, produced by Bob Ferguson.
"Jolene" tells the tale of a woman confronting Jolene, a stunningly beautiful woman, who she believes is trying to steal away her man and begging her "please don't take my man." Throughout the song, the woman implores Jolene "please don't take him just because you can". According to Parton, the song was inspired by a red-headed bank clerk who flirted with her husband Carl Dean at his local bank branch around the time they were newly married. In an interview, she also revealed that Jolene's name and appearance are based on that of a young fan who came on stage for her autograph.
The song became Parton's second solo number-one single on the country charts after being released as a single in late 1973 (prior to the album's release). It reached the top position in February 1974; it was also a moderate pop hit for her and a minor adult contemporary chart entry. The song has sold 566,000 digital copies in the US since it became available for digital download.
The song was released as a single later in the UK, and became Parton's first Top Ten hit song in the country, reaching number seven in the UK singles chart in 1976. The song also re-entered the chart when Parton performed at the Glastonbury festival in 2014. The song has sold 214,279 digital copies in the UK as of July 2014.
"Jolene (Live Under Blackpool Lights)" was released as a live single by American garage rock band The White Stripes. The single reached No. 16 in the UK singles chart in November 2004. The White Stripes previously released a studio version of "Jolene", as the B-side to their 2000 single of "Hello Operator", from the album De Stijl. In Australia, the song was ranked No. 10 on Triple J's Hottest 100 of 2004. Another live performance of the song is featured on the 2010 live album Under Great White Northern Lights. The White Stripes' version was voted one of the greatest live covers by readers of Rolling Stone magazine.
"Jolene (Live Under Blackpool Lights)"
"Black Math (Live Under Blackpool Lights)" (only on cd version)
"Do (Live Under Blackpool Lights)" (only on vinyl flip side)
In 2014, Australian recording artist Dami Im released an acoustic version.
Mindy Smith covered "Jolene" in 2003, both for her debut album One Moment More and the Dolly Parton tribute album Just Because I'm a Woman. Parton described this cover as her favorite version of the song. The version with Mindy Smith was performed on stage with Dolly Parton, who is also featured in the official music video.
the Persian pop star has covered this song in her album called "Do Parande" in 1976 . she is one of the first popular singers that has sung "Jolene".
Sherrié Austin's version of "Jolene" is the second track on her 2001 album Followin' A Feeling.
Post punk band The Sisters of Mercy often covered this song in concert as part of a series of tasteful but goth-"uncool" covers to provoke the audience. It can be heard on their live bootleg Amphetamine-Boeblingen.
British song alternative rock/metal group Queenadreena has covered the song in 2000.
Scottish female pop group Strawberry Switchblade released an electro-pop version as a single in the UK and Japan in 1985, and it was later included on an expanded edition of their 1985 s/t album.
Ellie Goulding is a female British pop song writer, performer, and singer. She covered this song in 2009.
In 2012, Miley Cyrus (Parton's goddaughter) performed a version in a "Backyard Sessions" video found on Cyrus' official website which gained some attention. She also performed the song as part of her Bangerz Tour.
The song was frequently covered in reality singing competition. On American Idol, the song was covered by Season 7 American Idol contestant Brooke White, Season 8's Alexis Grace, and Jessica Meuse in season 13. It was also covered in the third season of Australian Idol by Klancie Keough.
The Chilean cumbia compositor Paskual Ramirez made a 'Spanish-translated' cover with cumbia rhythms, partially based on the translation made by Las Chicas del Can for the LP: "Fantasía Vol. 1" (1991) and a techno-cumbia re-arrangement of the cover for the disc Paskual y su Alegría - Internacional (2000). His mate Claudia sang in the 1st version and his daughter Eva sang in the 2000s rearrangement.
A 1994 version by Swedish show group Spirella Girls was named "Brolin, Brolin" and was about Swedish soccer player Tomas Brolin.
"Jolene" was remixed as a dance track by Money, a dance group offshoot of British group James in the late 1990s. The lyrics were a sample from Parton herself, with new vocals (explaining the man in the song's point of view), by Saul Davies.
In 2013, YouTube user goodlittlebuddy's slowed-down version of "Jolene" rose to internet fame. The song was played at 33RPM instead of 45RPM, which represents a 25% slow down from the original. This version was featured during season one of the NBC television series The Blacklist.