Dolly Parton was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on Saturday night, concluding a journey in which she initially attempted to withdraw from consideration before subsequently agreeing to the honour.
Introduced by Pink, Parton delivered a rousing speech that served as a keen reminder of why the legendary country music singer and songwriter is a rocker at heart.
“I’m a rock star now!” Parton began, as reported by Rolling Stone.
“This is a very special night for me,” she continued. “I’m sure a lot of you knew that back when they said they were gonna put me in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, I didn’t feel like I had done enough to deserve that. And I didn’t understand at the time that it’s about more than that. But I’m just so honoured and so proud to be here tonight.”
Among the highlights was Pink teaming up with Brandi Carlile for a performance of Parton’s classic “Coat of Many Colors”.
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Parton also took part in the traditional jam session, performing her hit “Jolene” with Pink and Brandi Carlile, joined by fellow inductees Pat Benatar, Duran Duran frontman Simon LeBon, Rob Halford of Judas Priest, and Eurythmics duo Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart.
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Parton also strapped on an electric guitar to debut a new song she’d written for the occasion, titled “Rockin’,” which she performed backed by the Zac Brown Band.
“If I’m going to go in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, I’m going to have to earn it,” she said. “And you thought I couldn’t rock and roll.”
Interviewed on the red carpet, Parton revealed that she’s planning on recording her first-ever rock album.
“Well, I’m excited, I’m doing a rock ‘n’ roll album,” Parton said. “The time is right, time is everything. I had always thought I might do one, but I hadn’t thought about doing it right now.”
Her induction in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, however, led her to feel that time had come. “But I thought, well, why not now? I mean, with all the hoopla and all the craziness that went on around this, so I’m gonna do it.”
According to Parton, her album will feature a mixture of rock classics and some originals, along with some special guests. “I’m gonna do a lot of classic songs, I’ve written a few rock songs, and I’m gonna have a lot of the icons sing with me,” she said.
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Highlights from the ceremony at the Microsoft Theater in L.A. — which also featured the inductions of Eminen, Duran Duran, Lionel Richie, Pat Benatar, Eurythmics,and Carly Simon — will air Saturday, Nov. 19 on HBO.