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Dolly Parton's Divination Song

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Dolly Parton's Divination Song

Postby Kassandra » Mon Nov 10, 2014 2:13 pm

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"You just remember, the magic is inside you. There ain't no crystal ball."





Many people think Dolly is just singing about being old in this song. But she is really singing about what is called, "bone throwin,' " a divination technique practiced around the world since ancient times. The type Dolly is singing about here is most likely an African divination technique brought to the Americas by slaves and still kept alive, to this day, through folk magic traditions of the Southern United States, such as hoodoo. Learn more here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MK_qXjz1hZg


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Re: Dolly Parton's Divination Song

Postby lithe_forager » Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:47 am

dolly is some kind of goddess :) <3 glad i ran across this today. Tenn is quite a place as well.
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Re: Dolly Parton's Divination Song

Postby mrsdavid1975 » Thu Sep 10, 2015 8:51 pm

She's my third cousin! I've never met her though lol. She's my meemaws cousin.


Anyway. Yes I've heard of this. Very cool.
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Re: Dolly Parton's Divination Song

Postby Becks » Thu Sep 10, 2015 10:00 pm

I have always loved and respected her as a songwriter, and I even play some of her songs. I didn't know it's possible but she just got way more awesome.
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Re: Dolly Parton's Divination Song

Postby theharmoniouscrow » Fri Sep 11, 2015 5:20 am

Becks wrote:I have always loved and respected her as a songwriter, and I even play some of her songs. I didn't know it's possible but she just got way more awesome.

My mother has always loved Dolly, so I heard her songs growing up - as you said: She just got even more awesome :)
"It's often a person's mouth that broke their nose." - old Irish saying.

I listen more than I speak - don't mistake that for lack of opinion.
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Re: Dolly Parton's Divination Song

Postby Becks » Fri Sep 11, 2015 10:16 am

I think this is so cool.
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Re: Dolly Parton's Divination Song

Postby Kassandra » Fri Sep 11, 2015 5:53 pm

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Glad you guys dug the song, but now suddenly the video's gone. :cry: It seems to have gotten pulled. Odd, it'd been on YouTube a few years, I think, before I embedded it here. Happens a lot with videos on this board. I think from now on I'll just post a link to videos, rather than embed them, seems to work better that way for some reason. Sorry 'bout that.



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Re: Dolly Parton's Divination Song

Postby Kassandra » Fri Sep 11, 2015 7:25 pm

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OK, here's some substitute vids, for which I will only put hyperlinks, and no embeds.

I actually like this first video better than the one I posted in the OP because it is an audience cam clip of Dolly performing live. She comments on her inspiration for the song: "...being 'psychic,' or whatever. But, there were a lot of people like that in the mountains. In fact, my momma had a little bit of that about herself, so this was based loosely on that...Anyhow, this is about an old woman, and a daughter that got taken away from her because people thought she was crazy, because she had this special kind of gift..." Kind of gets to sounding like a Baptist church service for a minute there. Sing it, Sister Dolly!! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MuQBqlApw2U

For a much clearer audio, there's this video. I think the person who put this one together misunderstood the meaning of the song, thinking "these old bones" refers to old bones of the lady portrayed in the song, and may not have been aware of this being about divination. Accordingly, it contains a photo montage of a bunch of little old ladies, "a tribute to all the old women old living and gone." https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELpaKaMC9eg



On a deeper level, I think this song speaks of the discrimination shown to people with psychic ability, who may not view the world like everyone else does. Today in America there is actual language in the Diagnostic Statistical Manual (the "Bible" of the mental health industry) where someone displaying traits of what we might call "clairvoyance" and "clairaudience" could be diagnosed as having "disorders," and yes, such a one could get medicated for these "symptoms," and in worst case scenarios lose children and other things, even be institutionalized.

Ironically, at the same time I've noticed in American society the last couple decades there's this vastly growing acceptance of psychic ability, especially of mediumship. No doubt this is due, in large part, to the many television and film treatments of these topics (for better and worse, lol --some put forth stereotypes which are very unhelpful). So, as well as telling an entertaining tale of a misunderstood, old psychic woman, Dolly's song kind of makes a deeper social commentary, I think.

Anyway, thanks for your positive comments on this thread. I didn't think anyone was really looking at this video, haha. :wink:



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Dolly Parton's Divination Song

Postby mrsdavid1975 » Tue Sep 22, 2015 12:49 am

Yep. Dolly is related on my dads side, but on my MOM's side her grandmother had so many gifts. She is the one I take after most ' gift wise '. She was hospitalized a few times back in the day and my grandmother and all her brothers and sisters had to go into foster care a few times due to people reporting her as " crazy". But she just knew things. Eventually she started keeping them more to herself .. It's quite sad. I am happy to know her secrets though. And I'm privileged and grateful she shared her gifts and help with me.

I'm glad the world is more accepting now. I just wish she hadn't had to go through so much ( not only as being Indian , but also for knowing things she knew ).

I will never sit in a closet .. It is in her honor and the honor of her mother and all those on meemaw's side too that I will honor what we all have and never take it for granted or think of it as a burden. We are meant to help the world in some way.
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Re: Dolly Parton's Divination Song

Postby theharmoniouscrow » Tue Sep 22, 2015 1:42 am

mrsdavid1975 wrote:Yep. Dolly is related on my dads side, but on my MOM's side her grandmother had so many gifts. She is the one I take after most ' gift wise '. She was hospitalized a few times back in the day and my grandmother and all her brothers and sisters had to go into foster care a few times due to people reporting her as " crazy". But she just knew things. Eventually she started keeping them more to herself .. It's quite sad. I am happy to know her secrets though. And I'm privileged and grateful she shared her gifts and help with me.

I'm
Glad the world is more accepting now. I just wish she hadn't had to go through so much ( not only as being Indian , but also for knowing things she knew ).

I will never sit in a closet .. It is in her honor and the honor of her mother and all those on meemaw's side too that I will honor what we all have and never take it for granted or think of it as a burden. We are meant to help the world in some way.


Hear hear, MrsD!
And once again... TOO interesting! :D
"It's often a person's mouth that broke their nose." - old Irish saying.

I listen more than I speak - don't mistake that for lack of opinion.
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Re: Dolly Parton's Divination Song

Postby mrsdavid1975 » Wed Sep 23, 2015 12:39 pm

Haha. You're so sweet.
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