Top Ten B y J o c e ly n r . ne a l When less than ten percent of top country singles were typically sung by women, Dolly Parton (left) blazed her way to the top of the charts by covering a man's song and yodeling her way into the spotlight. From Steel Magnolias, copyright 1998, Tri-Star Pictures, Inc. All rights reserved. Courtesy of the Museum of Modern Art Film Stills Archive. Tradition runs deep in country music. One of the hallmarks of the genre is that new generations of singers pay tribute to their predecessors by building on their legacies and adhering to the strongest claims of lineage. Stars cover the songs of their own heroes, borrow and build on their styles, and openly educate their fans about the musical traditions to which they lay claim. As a result, the careers and influences of the greats within country music are hopelessly entangled. Any "Top Ten" list is most easily characterized by the names omitted. After all, why is Eddy Arnold not on this list, given that he placed almost 150 hits on the country charts in a career that spanned decades? The absence of Johnny
Southern Cultures – University of North Carolina Press
Published: Aug 13, 2009
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