Carl Thomas Dean, Dolly Parton’s Husband: Are They Still Together?

dolly parton husband

Dolly Parton Instagram Dolly Parton with her husband, Carl Dean.

Carl Dean is the famously publicity-shy husband of singing legend Dolly Parton.

A December 22, 2022, article in US Magazine reports that the couple are still together, and they’ve been married for more than 50 years.

However, according to US Magazine, they are rarely seen together in public, but Dean prefers it that way. Parton’s husband’s full name is Carl Thomas Dean. According to Country Rebel, since 1977, “Carl has owned and operated an asphalt-laying company in Nashville.”

Here’s what you need to know:

Parton Said She Is ‘Best Buddies’ With Dean

Parton opened up about her husband to Parade Magazine.

“I married a really good man, a guy that’s completely different from me,” she told the magazine, adding:

He’s not in show business. He’s not resentful of any of that. He loves to hear about the things I do. I love to hear about the things he does. So we enjoy each other’s company. We get along good. He’s got a great sense of humor. We’ve just been best buddies and best friends and, evidently, it’s working!

Asked why she stuck with him so long, Parton told Parade, “He understands me, he gets me. He’s very secure within himself. He’s never been jealous. It’s a great compliment to me. This is his statement: ‘Well, hell, I know it’s not easy out there. I’d feel less about any man that didn’t fall in love with you.'”

Dean Doesn’t Want to ‘Have His Picture in the Paper,’ She Says

GettyDolly Parton performs onstage during the 57th Academy of Country Music Awards

According to US Magazine, the pair prefer not to be seen together in public.

Parton and Dean met in Nashville in 1964, when she was trying to launch her music career, US Magazine reported. Within two years, they were married, but Dean was so low-profile that some fans didn’t think he was a real person, the magazine reported.

“He just don’t have any desire to be in show business,” Parton told Playboy in 1978, according to US Magazine. “He don’t want to have his picture in the paper. He don’t want to go out to the supermarket and have people say, ‘That’s Dolly Parton’s husband.’”

US Magazine reports that the couple never had children together.

Parton & Dean Met at a Nashville Laundromat

Getty ImagesDolly Parton.

Parton and Dean first met at the Wishy-Washy Laundromat in Nashville, Tennessee, according to Rolling Stone, which describes him as “a shy, rarely photographed man who to this day stays well out of the spotlight.”

“I love you, and I will support you in your career any way I can, but I am not going to any more of these wingdings,” Dean told Parton after a 1966 awards show, Rolling Stone reported.

According to, Parton was 18 when she met Dean, and he was 22. They were married in 1966, Parade reported.

Parton’s Husband Is a Fan of Mick Jagger

A&EDolly Parton and Carl Dean.

In November 2022, Parton told E! News that she was going to fill her next album with songs that her husband of 56 years, Carl Thomas Dean, would appreciate.

“I’m going to do a lot of his favorite songs,” she told E! News. “He loves Mick Jagger, he loves “Satisfaction”—those kind of songs.”

Parton added to E! News, “We have a lot of favorite songs. He loves rock ‘n’ roll, he loves Led Zeppelin and he loves ‘Stairway to Heaven.’ So I’m going to do a lot of things like that for him.”

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