Dolly Parton

Musician and philanthropist Dolly Parton is launching a weekly series in which she reads a children's book to an online audience at bedtime, drawing books from her popular Imagination Library project. The goal, the nonprofit says, is to give kids and families "a welcome distraction during a time of unrest and also inspire a love of reading and books."

The latest round of Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductions were announced today, and Whitney Houston is the only woman honored.

Four years after consultant Keith Hill's comment that women artists on country radio were best thought of as garnish — tomatoes, as in "hot" — added fuel to what was already becoming a major debate about sexism in country music, gender-equity activism in the genre has reached a tipping point.

Can Dolly Parton heal America? That's the question posed by a new podcast from WNYC, Dolly Parton's America, hosted by Radiolab's Jad Abumrad. It's not as far-fetched as you might think.

This story is part of American Anthem, a yearlong series on songs that rouse, unite, celebrate and call to action. Find more at NPR.org/Anthem.

The new Netflix comedy Dumplin' is all about Dolly Parton. But she's not in it. And that was deliberate. Instead, Dolly did what Dolly does best — write and sing songs for the movie.

The film follows a young girl, Willowdean (Danielle Macdonald), who lacks confidence, but after being inspired by Parton's music, participates in a beauty pageant in Clover City, Tx., despite her mom's objections. That mom is played by Jennifer Aniston, who also co-produced the film and helped get Parton on board.

In a career full of accolades, Dolly Parton now adds two world records to her collection. Guinness World Records recognized her as the female artist with the most hits on Billboard's Hot Country songs charts and for the most decades with a top 20 hit on Billboards Hot Country Songs Chart.

Following a wildfire in the Great Smoky Mountains region of her native Tennessee late last year which left hundreds homeless, country legend Dolly Parton immediately launched the My People Fund, promising to give displaced families a $1,000-per-month stipend sourced from outside donations and Parton's own foundation.

When the renowned radio personality and Grand Ole Opry fixture Bill Cody walked onto the stage at the Ryman Auditorioum to welcome Dolly Parton there for the first time in twelve years, he called her "the most beloved artist of all time." Then he quickly, almost imperceptibly, corrected himself, adding a qualifier: female artist." Who knows what flashed in Cody's mind in that moment — perhaps the face of Johnny Cash, the patron