Dolly Parton and Kelly Clarkson’s New Version of ‘9 to 5′ Is Pretty Emotional [Listen]
The slowed-down track is produced by acclaimed Nashville-based producer and songwriter Shane McAnnally, alongside Sasha Alex Sloan and King Henry. Drastically different from Parton’s original 1980 recording, this duet version swaps the jaunty, uptempo rhythm for a pensive, pop-inflected production.
“Well, I tumble outta bed and stumble to the kitchen / Pour myself a cup of ambition/ Yawn and stretch and try to come to life / Jump in the shower and the blood starts pumping / Out on the street, the traffic starts jumping / With folks like me on the job from 9 to 5," Clarkson sings tenderly in the opening verses before Parton joins on the chorus.
“Working 9 to 5, what a way to make a living / Barely getting by, it's all taking and no giving / They just use your mind, and they never give you credit / It's enough to drive you crazy if you let it,” they lament over a steady but slow, mid-tempo rhythm.
While the 1980 version was anthemic and sprightly, this re-recording is emotional and has a stripped-down production that fittingly spotlights how women continue to be severely under-appreciated and treated as mere clogs in the system at times.
"I was blown away when I heard what Shane had done with my song," Parton tells Rolling Stone. "This arrangement shows how differently a song can be done and the story can be told in a whole new way. And special thanks to [Dolly Parton Enterprises creative director] Steve Summers for getting the ball rolling on this musical venture."
This newly-released version of "9 to 5" will be featured in the upcoming documentary, Still Working 9 to 5, which will explore the social impact of the 1980 film 9 to 5 and how its message remains relevant four decades later.
Still Working 9 to 5 will be shown at select theaters in the U.S. from Sept. 16 to Sept. 22, 2022. Visit the documentary’s website for more information.
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