Singer, Player & Dolly Parton’s Brother Randy Parton Has Died

Dolly Parton’s younger brother, who was both a singer and songwriter, as well as a long-time bass and guitar player in Dolly Parton’s band, has died at the age of 67 after a long battle with Cancer. Randy Parton regularly performed at his big sister’s theme park, Dollywood, and appeared with her as a duet partner on numerous recordings.

The eighth of twelve kids, Randy was the Dolly’s most well-known musical sibling beside her sister Stella. As a solo performer, Randy Parton charted two Top 30 hits in 1980 with “Hold Me Like You Never Had Me” and “Shot Full of Love” in 1981 off the Shot Full of Love album. Randy was also the first to record the song “Roll On (Eighteen Wheeler)” written by Dave Loggins in 1982. Alabama would have a #1 hit with the song in 1984. Randy also sang on the soundtrack for the movie Rhinestone that co-starred Dolly and Sylvester Stallone in 1984.

Throughout his sister’s career, Randy Parton regularly played bass, and occasionally guitar for her on tour. He also sang numerous tracks with her both live and in the studio, including Dolly’s 1980 #1 duet “Old Flames (Can’t Hold a Candle To You).” He also had just recorded the duet “You Are My Christmas” for Dolly Parton’s 2020 Christmas album, which Parton wrote for Randy, who was born Randle Huston Parton on December 15th, 1953.

“Randy was our Christmas baby,” Dolly says. “We used to cry for one of those walking, talking dolls when we were kids that we would see in the catalog, and some of our relatives that had a little more than we did would get. So I remember the year that Randy was born around Christmas, mama said, ‘Hey come here, and look. We’ve got your own walking, taking doll.'”

In 1986, Randy Parton was given his own show at Dollywood as a performer. He later opened and performed at the short-lived Randy Parton Theater in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina before returning to Dollywood.

“My brother Randy has lost his battle with cancer,” Dolly said on Thursday morning (1-21). “The family and I are grieving his loss but we know he is in a better place than we are at this time. We are a family of faith and we believe that he is safe with God and that he is joined by members of the family that have gone on before and have welcomed him with joy and open arms. Randy was a great singer, writer, and entertainer.”

Randy Parton is survived by his wife Deb, his daughter Heidi, son Sabyn, and grandsons Huston and Trent. Those wishing to honor Randy may donate to the Imagination Library in honor of both Randy and his Father Lee Parton.

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