Dolly Parton has adjusted to this the hours before dawn long before she was ever a guest on morning TV. Growing up in the Smoky Mountains as one of 12 children, Dolly learned early about being up before dawn and doing a day’s work before the day even began. After over five decades of singing on every stage and venue possible, Dolly Parton is used to the 4:00 AM calls from major network morning shows. The singer-songwriter was primed and ready for her performance on “Today” this morning, November 30, and for a chat about her busy lifestyle and her gift for relating to countless people in very personal ways, no matter how or when they cross her path.

A fan-girl fantasy

Dolly Parton was more than ready for her close-up shots as she sang “Girl in the Movies,” one of her new original songs for her Netflix film, “Dumplin,” premiering December 7. In typical form, the superstar’s voice was spot on, and in her usual candor, she confessed when she missed a lyric, saying “whatever I was supposed to sing there” near the end of the song. That was the only hint of an effect from the early hour.

What Dolly Parton could not have prepared for was that Ellie Kemper, star of her own Emmy-nominated Netflix series, “The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” was guest-hosting the fourth hour of “Today” with Hoda Kotb. As is common on live TV, Hoda just so happened to have a clip of Ellie Kemper from six years ago after her first appearance on the Ellen DeGeneres show.

In the snippet, Kemper is gushing with gratitude and also gushing about loving Dolly Parton. She fantasizes that Dolly will sing at her upcoming wedding, and takes seeing the portrait of Dolly in the hallway as a positive sign, thanking her profusely in advance of the nuptials.

Sadly, Dolly didn’t make it sing at Ellie Kemper’s wedding, but the comedic actress still has the same fan-girl affection for Dolly Parton, and the superstar reciprocated, describing that her manner with people comes very naturally.

Early hours and spiritual work

“It's easy for me to love people, and be good to people,” Dolly explained after Hoda Kotb described that the aura in the studio always changed for the better when the country superstar came through the doors, insisting that the acclaimed artist transformed people in her own way. Dolly credited her social skills as “learned from my people” like her musical skills.

Music was inherent from her mother’s side, and Dolly began playing guitar and putting together rhythms, rhyme, and music from age 7.

She is very excited about her collaborations for “Dumplin’” which allowed her to work with songwriter Linda Perry and singers from Sia to Mavis Staples. It was Jennifer Aniston who sought Dolly Parton's involvement, asking her in a phone call if some of her old songs could be licensed for the film adaptation of the book that Aniston was already doing. Dolly was inspired to create new songs with that spark, and the themes of confidence and self-acceptance that resonate through the story of the central character, inspired by the songs of Dolly Parton.

Miley Cyrus has praised her godmother, Parton, for being a living lesson in how to treat people through the example of her life.

Jennifer Aniston named her dog Dolly Parton in honor of the partners’ connection, and Parton was honored to meet her canine namesake at a dinner party hosted by Aniston.

Dolly Parton prefers to get most of her day’s work can between 3 to 7 AM, confessing that she is an “early to bed, early to rise” sort of girl. Her habit of taking advantage of the “quiet energy” which includes meditation and what the 72-year-old dynamo calls “my little spiritual work” as her first priorities come naturally. After spiritual matters are set for the day, Dolly Parton turns to business, which may involve answering messages or making calls (probably only to the other members of her early risers club).

Whether on the “Today” set or setting off for another normal day in the life of Dolly Parton, the super-talented songstress makes a point of keeping her grace and being grateful to people.