Country singer Dolly Parton poses for a portrait, circa 1970.
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

What Would Dolly Do? Carly Pearce, Lainey Wilson + More Share What They Learned From Dolly Parton


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Dolly Parton is not only an iconic singer-songwriter, she's also a role model admired for her kindness, philanthropy and hard work.

In honor of Parton's 76th birthday, Carly Pearce, Tanya Tucker, Lainey Wilson, Hailey Whitters, Rhonda Vincent and more, share what the Smoky Mountain Queen means to them.

Carly Pearce

Carly Pearce performs during the 2021 iHeartCountry Festival at Frank Irwin Center on October 30, 2021 in Austin, Texas.

Carly Pearce performs during the 2021 iHeartCountry Festival at Frank Irwin Center on October 30, 2021 in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)

"I have learned more from Dolly that I can express. I will forever be inspired by her impact and dedication to country music. Above all, she has taught me to speak from the heart and to live authentically."

Tanya Tucker

Courtesy of Tanya Tucker/ Adkins Publicity

Happy Birthday to the iconic girl that you are. Thank you for being in our world. Without you it wouldn't be right. Love you, Dolly."

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Lainey Wilson

Lainey Wilson performs onstage at the 11th Annual BBR Music Group Pre-CMA Party on November 08, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee.

Lainey Wilson performs onstage at the 11th Annual BBR Music Group Pre-CMA Party on November 08, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images for BBR Music Group)

"Dolly Parton is my queen. She is incredible--I admire everything about her, from her songwriting, her singing and her style, to the way she carries herself and is an incredible businesswoman and most importantly, the way she treats people--there is no one that does it better than Dolly. Anytime I'm on the brink of something, I ask myself 'What would Dolly do?' and it always steers me in the right direction. No lie, I even wrote a song about it!"

Hailey Whitters

Photo of Hailey Whitters

Harper Smith

"I'll never forget the first time I heard Dolly Parton's voice come over the speakers on a family vacation in an Arkansas souvenir shop... it hasn't left me since. She's been a role model for me not only as an artist, but as a person and a public figure. She has an unbelievable talent for making people from all walks of life come together and feel something in her songs... I'm also convinced she must be an alien because no other human can play guitar as well as she can with fingernails that long!"

Frank Ray

Photo of Frank Ray

Courtesy of BMG

"As a girl dad trying to raise strong, independent young women, I can't think of a better role model than Dolly Parton--for them and me! She is the perfect example of why women just do things better. She is sharp, thoughtful, kind and always willing to help people out in need and is successful to boot. I'm continuously in awe of her drive and the way she has built an entire empire on hard work and a big heart. We need more people in this word like Dolly!"

Rhonda Vincent

Rhonda Vincent performs at the New York Stock Exchange 96th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting at New York Stock Exchange on December 5, 2019 in New York City.

Rhonda Vincent performs at the New York Stock Exchange 96th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting at New York Stock Exchange on December 5, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Jason Mendez/Getty Images)

"Words cannot begin to describe God's amazing creation we call Dolly Parton. We love her in so many ways. She's truly a gift from God. Her talents are endless, and her joy & kindness infectious. I feel so honored to call her a friend and mentor. If only we could express to Dolly what she means to each one of us. May God reign a lifetime of his many blessings of good health, joy, and pure happiness to Dolly on her birthday and always."

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Amy Jack

photo of Amy Jack

Courtesy of artist

"Dolly is beloved and adored by us all because she is so sweet, sensible, down to earth, funny, caring, hard-working, and genuine. There is just no one like Dolly."

Callie Twisselman

Press photo of Callie Twisselman

"Dolly Parton, need I say more. She is an icon, the queen of country and the most savvy business woman, the list goes on. She has truly inspired me so much in my music career, from her amazing song writing abilities to just being a genuine soul. I hope to have half the career she has had one day."

Ginger Minj

Press photo of Ginger Minj

Courtesy of artist

"From listening to her music with my grandmother growing up, to releasing my debut country album last year, Dolly has always been a guiding light in my world. She has taught me no dream is too big, no wig is too high and you can never have too many sparkles!"

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Casi Joy

press photo of Casi Joy

Courtesy of artist

"Dolly Parton is, in my opinion, a queen, and belongs on Mount Rushmore of country music! Dolly has taught me to speak my mind, and to always keep true to my authentic self. I also have to credit Dolly with a little more than that. It was my YouTube cover of her song 'Jolene' that was seen by The Voice, which led to me having a once in a lifetime experience on TV! If it weren't for her, and her inspiring music/songwriting, I wouldn't have had the opportunity to pursue my dreams even further. Thank you for everything, Dolly, and happy birthday! I can only hope to one day tell you how much you mean to me in person!"

Jordana Bryant

press photo of Jordana Bryant

Courtesy of artist

"Dolly is one of my biggest inspirations because I feel like she's really paved the way for women in country music. I find it so inspiring how she's had such a long career and stayed true to herself and her values through it all. And it's really amazing how even despite her incredible talent, anyone who's met her will tell you that she works harder than anyone."

Jenny Tolman

Photo of Jenny Tolman

Adkins Publicity

"Dolly is an inspiration because of the way she carries herself -- not only as an artist & songwriter, but as a businesswoman, as well. She found a way to be beautiful, yet approachable, humorous, but taken seriously, and continues to achieve ultimate success with amazing humility. She also definitely has inspired quite a few of my stage outfits! Happy Birthday to the queen!"

Jacob Bryant

Jacob Bryant poses for the cover of his new album, 'Bar Stool Preacher.'

Image courtesy of Adkins Publicity

"Dolly is a legendary icon who I feel was bred from the same cloth as myself -- came from a challenging upbringing but rose above and did the best for herself. I'm thankful to have had the opportunity to open for her at the Ryman a few years back as well. Wishing her the happiest of birthdays!"

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Bellamy Brothers

Photo of Dolly Parton with the Bellamy Brothers

Courtesy of Adkins Publicity

"Dolly Parton is the very embodiment of country music, and we will always love her. Happy Birthday, Dolly."

 

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