Steve May 4, 2022

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – NOVEMBER 05: Dolly Parton attends We Are Family Foundation honors Dolly Parton & Jean Paul Gaultier at Hammerstein Ballroom on November 05, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by John Lamparski/Getty Images)

Dolly Parton didn’t think she should be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, but she’s headed there anyway.

On Wednesday, the Cleveland-based museum announced its 2022 class of honorees. It includes Parton, Eminem, Duran Duran, Eurythmics, Carly Simon, Lionel Richie and Pat Benatar.

The New York Times reports:

The honorees — voted on by more than 1,000 artists, historians and music industry professionals — “each had 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 statement.

Parton, 76, had said in March that she was “extremely flattered and grateful to be nominated” but didn’t feel that she had “earned that right” to be recognized as a rock artist at the expense of others. Ballots, however, had already been sent to voters, and the hall said they would remain unchanged, noting that the organization was “not defined by any one genre” and had deep roots in country and rhythm and blues.

In a press release, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame provides a brief overview of Parton’s career:

Showcasing her songwriting acumen and her airy, yet gritty voice, Parton’s 1967 debut album, Hello, I’m Dolly, was a hit, and as a regular on The Porter Wagoner Show, she won over the audience with her talent and charm. After a string of successful duets with Wagoner and solo Number One hits like the rollicking “Joshua” and the haunting “Jolene,” Parton parted ways with Wagoner to take control of her career. Their split inspired Parton’s chart-topping “I Will Always Love You”: In addition to Whitney Houston’s smash cover of that song, Parton’s “Jolene” has been recorded by such diverse artists as the White Stripes.

Parton’s unapologetic femininity belied her shrewd business acumen, an asset in the male- dominated music industry. Refusing to be underestimated, she set her sights on the pop charts, and the strategy paid off. Her pop hits include “Here You Come Again,” “9 to 5” – the title track for the film in which she co-starred – and her Number One duet with Kenny Rogers, “Islands in the Stream” (1983). Other collaborations include a series of recordings with Linda Ronstadt and Emmylou Harris, under the name Trio.

Dolly Parton has been voted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame after initially requesting to bow out of this year’s nominations. She told @rachelnpr last week that if inducted, “I would just say thanks and I’ll accept it because the fans vote.” https://t.co/BZCcqjy0F7

— Morning Edition (@MorningEdition) May 4, 2022

NBC News adds:

To be considered for induction, artists must have released their first record 25 years before induction.

Eminem, Duran Duran, Dolly Parton, Lionel Richie and Carly Simon all appeared on the ballot for the first time, with this being Eminem’s first year of eligibility. The 2022 class also marks the first time that six female acts will be inducted in one class.

Eminem is the 10th hip-hop performer to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, which has an expansive definition of its namesake musical genre.

“Purists will continue the endless debate about which genres of music are legitimate entries into an organization created to showcase rock ‘n’ roll,” writes USA Today. “The inclusions of country luminary Parton, rap titan Eminem and pop standout Simon will only exacerbate the argument.”

The Times adds:

Those passed over this year also included Kate Bush, Devo, Fela Kuti, MC5, New York Dolls, Rage Against the Machine and Dionne Warwick.

Judas Priest was on the ballot, but will instead be inducted in the non-performer category for musical excellence, alongside the songwriting and production duo Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis. Harry Belafonte and Elizabeth Cotten will be recognized with the Early Influence Award, while the executives Allen Grubman, Jimmy Iovine and Sylvia Robinson are set to receive the Ahmet Ertegun Award, named for the longtime Atlantic Records honcho and one of the founders of the Rock Hall.

The 37th annual induction ceremony will be held on Nov. 5, at Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, Calif., and will air at a later date on HBO and SiriusXM.

You can read more about the inductees here.

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