Dolly Parton is making a rock n’ roll album to boost her chances of getting into the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame. To help her out, she’s asked her old friend Richie Sambora, who plays guitar for Bon Jovi.
Sambora, 64, says, “Dolly is the queen of country, she’s a national treasure. They asked me to play guitar on her new song ‘Rock Star,’ and I was happy to do it. I asked, ‘What do you want me to do?’ They said, ‘Just be yourself.'”
Sambora and Parton first met in 2014 at a music festival in the UK. “She covered a song I wrote, and she asked me to join her on stage. We had a blast and rocked the place.”
They teamed up again in March to record the new song. Sambora, who wrote Bon Jovi’s rock/country hit “Who Says You Can’t Go Home,” is a fan of crossing musical styles.
“People usually stick to their own style, but I like it when genres mix. It’s cool when it works, like our song going No. 1,” Sambora says.
Working with a Nashville legend like Parton is an honor for Sambora, and his daughter Ava, 26, is excited too. “Ava grew up with my music. She loves Dolly because she’s timeless and an amazing songwriter.”
Sambora credits Ava for his diverse music taste, including Post Malone, Ariana Grande, and Lizzo. He might even show up at a Taylor Swift concert soon.
“I’ve been a Swiftie for a long time because of my daughter. I respect her work ethic, and she even crashed Ticketmaster once. That’s something to be proud of!”