Dolly Parton recently appeared on Bravo’s “Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen” where she revealed where she invested all of her royalties from Whitney Houston’s 1992 rendition of her song “I Will Always Love You.” And the late singer definitely played a big role in it.
According to the songstress, she invested the royalties – $10 million according to Forbes – to purchase a strip mall in the Sevier Park neighborhood, home to Black families and businesses now called 12 South, back in February 1997. It was a 6,317-square-foot Mission-style complex turned into her office in Nashville. Dolly said that she thought it would be the perfect place for her, and she could go down there with Whitney’s people, who are her people as well.
In an interview with The Washington Post, Dave Ewing, a long-time Nashville historian, said that Dolly purchased the property at the time when everyone else shied away from it. He also said that she has always been down for the Black Lives Matter movement, and people are just hearing it now in light of stronger calls to the cause.
And as Ewing noted, Dolly Parton was never one to really care about race or gender. And her buying a property in a predominantly Black neighborhood was just definitely something you wouldn’t be surprised about.
She really had gone out of her way to buy and build a property in the area as no realtor would have shown that lot to her. At the time, the neighborhood was home to “African American funeral homes, business, and churches,” but Dolly’s quiet investment in the area, revamping the landscape, put it on the map and turned it into one of the hottest neighborhoods in Nashville.
Dolly Parton, Whitney Houston