Dolly Rebecca Parton (born January 19, 1946) is a Grammy Award-winning American singer-songwriter, author, actress and philanthropist, known for her prolific work in country music. In the 44 years since her national chart debut, she remains the most successful female artist in the history of the genre, with 25 number-one singles (a record for a female artist), and a record 42 top-10 country albums. She has the distinction of having performed on a top-5 country hit in each of the last five decades and is the only artist to score a No. 1 country single in each of the past four decades.
She stayed with the Wagoner show and continued to record duets with him for seven years, then made a break to become a solo artist. In 1974, her song, "I Will Always Love You" (written about her break from Wagoner), was released and went to #1 on the country charts.
She is known for her distinctive mountain[clarification needed] soprano, sometimes bawdy humor, flamboyant dress sense and voluptuous figure. Parton later had commercial success as a pop singer, as well as an actress. Her 1977 album, Here You Come Again, was her first million-seller, and the title track ("Here You Come Again") became her first top-ten single on the pop charts (reaching No. 3); many of her subsequent singles charted on both pop and country charts, simultaneously.
Parton is a hugely successful songwriter, having begun by writing country music songs with strong elements of folk music in them, based upon her upbringing in humble mountain surroundings, and reflecting her family's evangelical Christian background. Her songs "Coat of Many Colors", "I Will Always Love You" and "Jolene" have become classics in the field, as have a number of others. In 2001, she was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
In a 2009 interview with Larry King, Parton was asked how many songs she has written. She replied "at least 3,000", having written seriously since the age of seven. Parton went on to say that she writes something every day, be it a song or an idea. [wikipedia]