Dolly Parton Inducted into Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Despite Initial Decision to ‘Respectfully Step Down’

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Dolly Parton was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame on Wednesday despite the country music icon’s last-minute plea to “respectfully step down.”

The Class of 2022 includes Eminem, who was inducted in his first year of eligibility, as well as Duran Duran, Pat Benatar, Lionel Richie, Carly Simon and Eurythmics.

Benatar, 69, has been eligible for induction since 2004 but only received her first nomination in 2020. As for Simon, 76, she has been eligible since 1997.

In addition to the performer category, Judas Priest will receive the Musical Excellence Award alongside Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis. Harry Belafonte and Elizabeth Cotton will receive the Early Influence Award.

DOLLY PARTON BACKTRACKS, “WILL GRATEFULLY ACCEPT” ROCK HALL APPOINTMENT

Dolly Parton joins Eminem and Lionel Richie in this year’s Class of 2022.
(Getty Pictures)

Artists become eligible for induction 25 years after the release of their first commercial recording.

The winners, who were voted for by more than 1,000 artists, historians and music industry professionals, “each have a profound impact on the sound of youth culture and helped change the course of rock ‘n’ ‘ roll,” said John Sykes, the chairman. of the Rock Hall in a press release.

Parton made headlines in March after saying she was “extremely flattered and grateful to be nominated” but did not believe she had “deserved this right” to be recognized as a rock artist compared to to other artists. As a result, she wanted to “respectfully step down.” But by then, ballots had already been sent to voters.

In response, Rock Hall announced that it was not backing down, explaining that the organization was “not defined by any particular genre”. They pointed out that he had deep roots in country music, as well as rhythm and blues.

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Dolly Parton thought other artists were more deserving of Rock Hall of Fame nominations.
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Dolly Parton thought other artists were more deserving of Rock Hall of Fame nominations.
(Jack Plunkett/Invision/AP)

Last week, the 76-year-old said she would accept her induction after all, if it came through.

“I always believed that the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame was for rock music people, and I recently found out that it’s not necessarily that,” she told NPR.

“…I just felt like I would take it away from someone who maybe deserved it, definitely more than me, because I never thought of myself as a rock artist,” she added.

Some of the artists who died this year include Kate Bush, DEVO, New York Dolls, Rage Against the Machine and Dionne Warwick.

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Dolly Parton was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1999.

Dolly Parton was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1999.
(Jim Smeal/Ron Galella collection via Getty Images)

The 37th annual induction ceremony will take place on November 5 at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. It will then air at a later date on HBO and will be available to stream on HBO Max.

Parton isn’t the first inducted artist whose music isn’t rock. It has been noted that, in recent years, the inductees and nominees have moved away from the musical genre. The Notorious BIG was in the Class of 2020 while Jay-Z was inducted in 2021.

The “Jolene” artist was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1999. She was announced as one of this year’s nominees in February. She now joins country artists, such as Johnny Cash, Chet Atkins and Hank Williams, at Rock Hall.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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