dolly parton i will always love you

COVER vs ORIGINAL: ‘I Will Always Love You’

The song, “I Will Always Love You”, was originally recorded by Dolly Parton in 1973

Dolly Parton (b.1945) wrote the song “I Will Always Love You” for her seminal album “Jolene”. The track was produced by Bob Ferguson (1927-2001) and was released as the second single from the album in March 1974 and topped the US Country singles chart. Dolly re-recorded the song in 1982 for the soundtrack to her film ‘The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas’. This time the song was given a wider commercial release and peaked at No.53 on the US singles chart and topped the Canadian chart as well as making the top ten in The Netherlands and Belgium.

“I Will Always Love You” was revived for another film, this time ‘The Bodyguard’ in 1992, the debut movie for singer Whitney Houston, who recorded the song with producer David Foster. Her version was released as the lead single from the soundtrack album in November and went on to become her biggest ever, topping the charts in over thirty countries worldwide and shifting in excess of twenty million copies to date! The soundtrack album itself would register global sales of more than 40 million, becoming the best selling soundtrack album ever.

British singer Sarah Washington would take a dance version of the song to No.12 in 1993 in her home country and to No.3 in Spain, while Dolly herself was back in 1995 with yet another version of the song, this time with fellow Country singer Vince Gill, from her album “Something Special”, which also included a new recording of the song “Jolene”. Full circle!

But which version is the best? DOLLY’s original or WHITNEY’s cover?

Take a look at some of the other posts in this series and don’t forget to follow the playlist.