By Maureen Lee Lenker
February 10, 2019 at 09:48 PM EST
Kevin Winter/Getty Images

The Grammy awards will always love Dolly Parton.

Parton, who has eight Grammys and 47 nominations to her credit, for her renowned singing and songwriting was honored with a special tribute during the 61st annual Grammy Awards on Sunday night.

Many artists who have cited Parton as an inspiration, including Kacey Musgraves, Maren Morris, Katy Perry, and more took to the stage to pay tribute to the beloved songwriter. Parton is also the 2019 MusiCares Person of the Year, and she was honored with a lengthier tribute concert Friday night.

In essence, Sunday night’s performance was the MusiCares banquet in miniature with many artists reprising their performances from that night, most notably Musgraves and Perry on a duet of “Here You Come Again” in outfits that were vintage Dolly. Parton took to the stage to duet for most of the tribute, striding out at the end of Musgraves and Perry’s opening segment to join them for the final verses of the song.

Miley Cyrus then arrived onstage with her signature low-voiced growl to deliver a rousing performance of “Jolene” alongside Parton, who is also her godmother. The two shared a tender embrace that was one of the most touching moments of the tribute with its clear evidence of their affection for each other.

Dyed-in-the-wool Parton fans got a special treat when she offered up a song off the legendary Trio II album she made with Emmylou Harris and Linda Ronstadt in 1999. Cyrus stayed on, while Maren Morris — who was up for five Grammys herself — joined them to round out the trio for a beautifully realized performance of Neil Young’s “After the Gold Rush.”

One of Parton’s most admirable attributes is her longevity and this year she gained a special spotlight with the Netflix movie Dumplin’ all about a Parton obsessed teen. Parton wrote the original song “Red Shoes” for the film, and brought it to the Grammys stage with assistance from country quartet Little Big Town.

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It was another movie soundtrack song that brought the tribute to a rousing close, however, when all of the performers from the segment returned to the stage alongside Parton to knock out her 1980 Oscar-nominated hit “9 to 5.” It was a joyous moment, the love for Parton and her music clear on all of the singers’ faces, as well as in the audience (many were spotted dancing along throughout the tribute, including Korean supergroup BTS).
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Parton is a true music icon, and the 2019 Grammys paid her due tribute with this star-studded segment.

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