Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers speak exclusively with Closer Weekly about their unique relationship and brand new duet, “You Can’t Make Old Friends,” from Dolly’s latest album, Blue Smoke, out May 13.

“Kenny is one of my favorite people in the whole wide world,” the 68-year-old blond bombshell tells Closer about the duo’s close relationship, which helps to make their duets so special.

“Kenny and I have always had that love and that passion. Never been lovers,” Dolly points out with a laugh, “but always been in love and I think we really sing well together.”

And the feeling is mutual. “I think there’s a magic there. I’m so much better with her than I am without her,” Kenny, 75, tells the mag before revealing how the duet came about.

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“You know, it’s a funny story. I was out at a rock ’n’ roll show and a guy came backstage and said, ‘Kenny, my name’s Ryan. I was with some friends the other day, and I realized that some of my greatest childhood memories are when I came to your farm and rode golf carts with your son, Chris. And I was telling them, you know what? You can’t make old friends.’

“And I thought, wow, that is a song waiting to happen!”

From that moment, Kenny became very involved in the songwriting. “When they were putting this song together, Kenny was in on the writing of this,” Dolly shares with Closer.

“He said, ‘You gotta write this for Dolly and for me so we can have another good duet!’ We really are those kind of friends where you can’t make old friends. This is a perfect idea for a song for us.”

Read the full interview from the dynamic duo in the new issue of Closer Weekly, on newsstands now!

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