Dolly Parton continued her path to pop-culture sainthood on Monday (Mar. 4), when the country music legend issued a statement where she withdrew herself from consideration for the 2022 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame class. “Even though I am extremely flattered and grateful to be nominated for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame,” wrote Dolly, “I don’t feel that I have earned that right. I really do not want votes to be split because of me, so I must respectfully bow out.”
“I do hope that the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame will understand and will be willing to consider me again – if I’m ever worthy,” wrote Dolly. “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 (Carl Thomas Dean) is a total rock ‘n’ roll freak and has always encouraged me to do one. I wish all the nominees good luck, and thank you again for the compliment! Rock on!”
Instead of being disappointed that Dolly was taking herself out of the running, her fans applauded her move. “Humble queen,” wrote one. “Legend and a leader,” added another. “Queen Dolly, you are worthy of this award and so many more. We love you so much.” “I just love her integrity.” “We truly do not deserve you, Dolly.” “If Dolly isn’t rock and roll, then I don’t know who is.”
Well, [Dolly] just blew my mind,” tweeted Dee Snider of Twisted Sister. “Recognizing she is (amazing but) NOT rock ‘n’ roll, she has turned down her @rockhall nomination! She doesn’t want to take recognition away from an actual rock artist! THANK YOU, MISS PARTON!”
100%! Dolly is a true legend on so many different levels, not the least of which is her humility and deference to artists in the rock genre. On top of all that, she’s brilliant, ridiculously talented and obviously an exceptional human being with a loving heart & soul.
— Rhubarb (@RubenBa40546243) March 14, 2022
Dolly Parton has just declined her Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nomination and that may mean she is now officially the coolest person on the planet.
— Katy (@KatyJayne101) March 14, 2022
Dolly’s name was among those up for the Rock Hall’s Class of 2022. Artists are eligible for the Hall of Fame 25 years after their first commercial recording, meaning that this year, candidates would have had to put out their first song by 1996. The list of nominees included Dolly, Beck, Pat Benatar, Kate Bush, DEVO, Duran Duran, Eminem, Eurythmics, Judas Priest, Fela Kuti, The MC5, New York Dolls, Rage Against the Machine, Lionel Richie, Carly Simon, A Tribe Called Quest and Dionne Warwick.
The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame has always courted controversy and backlash with its inductees, with many loudly questioning what constitutes “rock & roll.” The 2021 class included Jay-Z and Carole King, and the year before, Whitney Houston and The Notorious B.I.G. were inducted. Janet Jackson, Tupac Shakur, N.W.A., Donna Summer, Randy Newman, Beastie Boys, and Run-DMC are just some of the hip-hop/disco/singer-songwriter artists that have drawn some ire with their induction.