Rockin' Years

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"Rockin' Years"
Single by Dolly Parton and Ricky Van Shelton
from the album Eagle When She Flies and Backroads
B-side "What a Heartache"[1]
Released February 4, 1991[2]
Format 7" single, CD Single
Recorded November 8, 1990[2]
Genre Country
Length 3:25
Label Columbia Nashville
Writer(s) Floyd Parton
Producer(s) Steve Buckingham, Gary Smith, Dolly Parton[2]
Dolly Parton singles chronology
"Take Me Back to the Country"
"Rockin' Years"
"Silver and Gold"
Ricky Van Shelton singles chronology
"Life's Little Ups and Downs"
"Rockin' Years"
"I Am a Simple Man"

"Rockin' Years" is a song written by Floyd Parton, and recorded as a duet by American country music artists Dolly Parton and Ricky Van Shelton. it was released in February 1991 as the lead-off single to both Parton's album Eagle When She Flies and Shelton's album Backroads. The song reached the top of the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks (now Hot Country Songs) chart, giving Parton her twenty-third number one and Shelton his eighth. The song would be Parton's last chart-topper until 2006.


The song is a mid-tempo country waltz in which two narrators — a male and a female — promise to love each other until their "rockin' years"; i.e., when they are old and sitting in rocking chairs together.

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1991) Peak
Canada Country Tracks (RPM)[3] 1
US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)[4] 1

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (1991) Position
Canada Country Tracks (RPM)[5] 33
US Country Songs (Billboard)[6] 29
Preceded by
"Down Home"
by Alabama
Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks
number-one single

April 27-May 4, 1991
Succeeded by
"If I Know Me"
by George Strait
RPM Country Tracks
number-one single

May 18, 1991
Succeeded by
"Drift Off to Dream"
by Travis Tritt

Other recorded versions[edit]

An unreleased duet between George Jones and Parton was recorded in 1988 but remained unreleased until the release of his 2008 album Burn Your Playhouse Down - The Unreleased Duets.


  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2008). Hot Country Songs 1944 to 2008. Record Research, Inc. pp. 315–317. ISBN 0-89820-177-2. 
  2. ^ a b c Greatest Hits Plus (CD). Ricky Van Shelton. Columbia Records. 1992. 52753. 
  3. ^ "Top RPM Country Tracks: Issue 1520." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. May 18, 1991. Retrieved August 16, 2013.
  4. ^ "Dolly Parton – Chart history" Billboard Hot Country Songs for Dolly Parton.
  5. ^ "RPM Top 100 Country Tracks of 1991". RPM. December 21, 1991. Retrieved August 16, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Best of 1991: Country Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. 1991. Retrieved August 16, 2013.