Dolly Parton has been America’s premiere country songstress since the the 1970s when she rose to fame alongside Porter Wagoner. Today her songs have been used in countless films and have been covered in genres ranging from medieval style to R & B and pop. Her face and style are iconic and she even has a line of baking mixes! But, when this influential actress, songwriter, and singer was initially approached by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in the spring of 2022 she turned down their nomination!

Dolly Parton with Porter Wagoner 1969
Dolly Parton with Porter Wagoner in 1969. Via: Moeller Talent, Inc./Wiki Commons

At the time Parton was thinking that she didn’t have the chops to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for one very simple reason: she’s a country singer and not a rock performer. In a red carpet interview at the 2022 induction ceremony for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame she said that that when she was told of her nomination she thought to herself, “I don’t know if I deserve to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame because I never thought of myself as a rocker. But, I’ve always loved rock and roll.”

At the time Parton thought that having her name on the ballot of potential inductees would take votes away from other performers she thought were more in keeping with the genre of rock music. She went on to explain that people told her it was much more than just a genre of music and finally she admitted that she “had influenced people with my music” and later accepted.

Dolly Parton performing 2011
Via: Eva Rinaldi/Flickr

After being given a welcoming speech by Pink Parton got on stage and triumphantly announced, “I’m a rock star now!” In her acceptance speech on stage she said, “I didn’t really feel like I had done enough to deserve that.” It just goes to show you that even the brightest stars sometimes don’t see how they touch the lives of their fans.

Parton went on to perform a new song she wrote especially for the occasion called “Rockin'”, after a quick costume change into some leather and chains and holding a guitar in true rocker fashion. Other inductees into the hall for 2022 included Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo, Duran Duran, Eminem, Eurythmics, Lionel Richie, and Carly Simon, among others being honored that night.

You can hear her words in the video below from the night she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.