Daddy's Moonshine Still

Album: Joshua (1971)
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Songfacts®:

  • In this track from her seventh solo album, Dolly Parton portrays a daughter who recalls the strife her father caused their family by selling moonshine, a high-proof bootleg liquor. Although her dad really did dabble in producing the homebrew, it didn't cause as much problems in her family as it did for others in her Eastern Tennessee mountain community.

    "My daddy made moonshine for a while, and Mama didn't like that. He didn't really want to do it, but people make moonshine in the mountains because they need the income. So Daddy did that for a time, and so did a lot of my relatives," she recalled in her 2020 book, Songteller. "It broke a lot of hearts, because not only did they make it, they drank it. Then they began mistreating their families - their wives and their kids. I take poetic license in most everything I write, but I could base the song loosely on things that have happened in my life."
  • 1971 was a fruitful year for Dolly's solo career. She released two albums, Joshua and the gospel album The Golden Streets Of Glory, that earned her Grammy nominations for their respective title tracks, and she landed her first #1 Country hit with "Joshua." She also issued the album Coat Of Many Colors, which featured her classic song of the same name.

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