Dolly Parton has long been considered the Queen of Country, but the Nashville music titan was on track to earn a new title: Rock and Roll Hall of Famer. That is, until Parton bowed out of the race.
“Even though I am extremely flattered to be nominated for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, I don’t feel that I have earned that right,” the singer-songwriter wrote in a statement posted to social media. “I really do not want the votes split because of me, so I must respectfully bow out.”
Parton continued, “I do hope that the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame will understand and be willing to consider me again — if I’m ever worthy. This has, however, inspired me to put out a hopefully great rock ‘n’ roll album at some point in the future, which I have always wanted to do! My husband is a total rock ‘n’ roll freak, and has always encouraged me to do one.”
The statement represents a reversal of what Parton previously said about her willingness to be inducted into the Hall. In an interview Parton did with Variety just a week and a half ago, when she was in rehearsals for hosting the Academy of Country Music Awards, the performer said she would be “honored” to be voted in. “I was so surprised that that I was even nominated to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. I never thought about that, but they say they judge that on a whole lot of things. I’m not expecting to win. But it was a great honor to be nominated. … I’m not expecting to win, but if I should, I would be very honored and… I’ll just see.”
Last month, Parton was nominated as a potential inductee into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame alongside Beck, Duran Duran, Eminem, Lionel Richie, Carly Simon and A Tribe Called Quest. Previous nominees Pat Benatar, Kate Bush, Devo, Eurythmics, Judas Priest, Fela Kuti, MC5, the New York Dolls, Rage Against the Machine and Dionne Warwick are also being considered again in 2022.
Warwick, who was a guest on “Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen” on Sunday, said of her nomination, “I’m not a rock ‘n’ roller… The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, as I grew to know it… was specifically for rock ‘n’ roll acts.”
Warwick continued, “I feel now, especially when I hear Dolly Parton’s being nominated — which I’m thrilled for her about — they should rename the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and call it the Music Hall of Fame. Now that they’re bringing so many other genres into it, why not?”
Last week, besides hosting the Academy of Country Music Awards, Parton published a novel co-written with James Patterson, “Run, Rose, Run,” and a companion album of the same name.