100 Greatest Country Artists of All Time

From architects of the genre like Hank Williams and Jimmie Rodgers to game-changers Garth Brooks and Shania Twain

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Dolly Parton
Dolly Parton Peter Still/Redferns8/100

8. Dolly Parton

A global pop icon whose career as musician and actress transcends country, Parton is one of its greatest singer-songwriters, and her signatures – "Jolene," "Coat of Many Colors" and the irrepressible "I Will Always Love You" – are among the genre's defining classics. Her birdlike soprano has been the gold standard for countless singers, and her winking persona ("It costs a lot to look this cheap!") has made her a heroine of camp. But even with an empire that includes the Dollywood theme park, she's kept it real, with a string of fine 2000s bluegrass LPs joining a catalog of over 20 Number One hits. W.H.

Key Tracks: "Coat of Many Colors," "9 to 5"

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