The 3 Guinness World Records That Dolly Parton Holds

All too often, we hear alarming tales of the mega-wealthy. How they made their money in less-than-scrupulous fashion, and how they used it to less-than-scrupulous ends. It's easy to become a little jaded by the antics of the mega-rich.

There are those, however, who use their considerable fortunes for good. Country music icon Dolly Parton, for instance, has her fingers in all kinds of remarkable pies. Per Forbes, she retains all the rights for all of her songs (a rule she even refused to break when Elvis Presley asked to cover "I Will Always Love You" in the 70s in exchange for an equal split of the rights). The Tennessee theme park Dollywood has also proven to be a particularly lucrative venture. All told, Dolly's various business dealings have resulted in her formidable net worth of $650 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.

Needless to say, much of this wealth has been accumulated during her meteoric music career. So successful has this country star been that she boasts a trio of Guinness World Records relating to her musical achievements.

The musical career that has done so much good in the world

For many, Dolly Parton is just a musical phenomenon ('just' perhaps being the wrong word). She has sung about the dastardly "Jolene," about the perils of a 9-to-5 job, and tackled so many of the other issues that are central to country music. Along the way, she has racked up quite the following. In June 2014, according to Metro, she marked 100 million album sales with a performance at the legendary Glastonbury festival.

She is, undoubtedly, one of the most beloved, prolific, and talented singers in musical history, but she's so much more than that too. A shrewd businesswoman and generous philanthropist, Vogue reported in October 2022 that she was one recipient of the 2022 Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy. "I'm proud for what I'm being honored for –- especially with the Imagination Library ...," she told the outlet. "We've done great things for children in their young, impressionable years so that they can learn to read and write."

Parton's success, in short, has done wonders for so many around the world, thanks to her generous nature. She couldn't have done so, in turn, without the support of her dedicated fans, who have catapulted her to world-record-breaking achievements on multiple occasions.

A true record breaker breaks her own records

In December 2021, Guinness World Records reported that the incomparable Dolly Parton had broken the record for most hits on the U.S. Hot Country Songs chart by a female artist. The record? A remarkable 109 songs. This defeated the previous world record, which had reportedly been held by ... well, unsurprisingly, Parton herself. According to the outlet, "Does He Love You" was the song that claimed this new title, though it arrived at a rather modest 47th place on the chart.

It seems the old saying is true: Dolly Parton doesn't get older, she just gets better. Guinness World Records goes on to state that when it comes to songs from a female artist that hit the top spot on that same chart, the world record is Parton's too — 25. A quarter-century of No. 1 country music hits is a tall order, but if anyone was going to achieve it, it's absolutely no surprise at all that it was Dolly. To complete the trio of records held by the country icon, she achieved another feat on the Hot Country Songs chart, one that only one other person has ever managed.

7 decades of remarkable success

As Dolly Parton's official website reports, her very first solo studio album was "Hello, I'm Dolly." The appropriately-titled record launched in February 1967, and the Monument Records release played a crucial part in starting her journey to superstardom. At the time, few could have imagined that she would still be a star in the business so many decades later.

That's exactly what she is, though, as Guinness World Records attests. In 2018, she achieved the record for most decades with a Top 20 hit on the U.S. Hot Country Songs chart — six decades. Going one better in 2022, her seven decades earned her the additional record of most decades on the U.S. Hot Country Songs chart (female).

What an unprecedented career Parton has had, and continues to have. As befits her new achievements, Nashville hosted a Guinness World Records special presentation, at which she was presented with her trio of awards. As modest as ever, she said at the event, "I had no idea that I would be in Guinness World Records this many times! I am flattered and honored. I've had a lot of people help me get here. Thanks to all of you and all of them for helping me have all of this."