As previously reported, “Forever Country,” by the superstar-infused collective dubbed Artists of Then, Now & Forever, vaults in at No. 1 on Billboard‘s Hot Country Songs chart (dated Oct. 8). It also launches at No. 21 on the all-genre Billboard Hot 100. “Forever” is a medley of three songs, including Dolly Parton‘s classic “I Will Always Love You,” with the icon earning the closing scene in the official “Forever” video.
Parton adds even more country chart honors, as she notches her first top 20 hit on Hot Country Songs in 10 years, as “Jolene,” another reworking of a beloved title from her catalog, by vocal quintet Pentatonix featuring Parton, debuts at No. 18.
Thanks to the arrival of the new take on “Jolene,” Parton is the only artist with top 20 hits on Hot Country Songs in the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s, ’90s, ’00s & ’10s. Notably, Willie Nelson could match that feat of longevity if he can score a top 20 entry under his own name during the ’10s, as he’s reached the region in each decade from the ’60s through the ’00s; it’s no surprise, of course, that Nelson’s “On the Road Again” also forms a third of “Forever Country” (with Parton’s “Always” and John Denver‘s “Take Me Home, Country Roads”).
Along with her top 20 history, Parton is also the only artist with top 40-charting titles on Hot Country Songs in each decade from the ’60s through the ’10s.
Additionally of note, late legend George Jones is the only artist to appear on Hot Country Songs, at any rank, in every decade since the list launched as a multi-metric survey on Oct. 20, 1958; he most recently appeared on the chart in 2013.
The new a cappella version of “Jolene” starts at No. 4 on Country Streaming Songs with 2.6 million U.S. streams in the week ending Sept. 22, according to Nielsen Music, and No. 7 on Country Digital Song Sales with 18,000 first-week downloads sold. Its official video premiered Sept. 16 (the first day of the sales and streaming chart week).
Parton had last hit the Hot Country Songs top 20 in 2006 as featured on Brad Paisley‘s No. 1 “When I Get Where I’m Going.” (Pentatonix makes its first visit to the chart.)
Parton had last made Hot Country Songs at all in 2008. With the debut of the new “Jolene,” she ends her longest break from the chart. She first reached the ranking, and any Billboard chart, nearly 50 years ago, on Jan. 21, 1967, with the No. 24-peaking “Dumb Blonde.” She entered the top 20 for the first time with follow-up “Something Fishy,” which rose to No. 17 in August 1967.
Parton charts “Jolene” for a second time on Hot Country Songs; her original version ruled the Feb. 2, 1974, chart.
In all, Parton continues a prosperous 2016. Her new album Pure & Simple debuted atop the Sept. 10-dated Top Country Albums chart, marking her first leader on the list since 1991, when Eagle When She Flies spent a week at the summit.