Remembering the times Aretha Franklin blessed the sports world with her talent

Angelo Anderson
August 17, 2018

She also sang (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman at the Kennedy Center Honors in 2015, attended by Obama, and her performance moved him to tears. Dubbed the "Queen of Soul", her signature song, a 1967 rendition of Otis Redding's "Respect", was so powerful that Redding himself stopped playing his version after hearing it. Franklin's version become an anthem for the American Civil Rights and Women's Rights movements.

Mayor of Detroit Mike Duggan also issued a statement saying: "We are all deeply saddened that Aretha has passed".

The 76-year-old "Respect" and "Think" singer died Thursday, her publicist told the Associated Press.

The family added: "In one of the darkest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our heart".

In recent years she was doted for showing up when called upon, either at ceremonies celebrating the past, or at Barack Obama's 2009 inauguration where she famously wore a metric ton of fabric on her head.

At the 1998 Grammy Awards, the tenor Luciano Pavarotti lost his voice before the live broadcast, and the producers asked Aretha if she could step in and sing Puccini's "Nessun Dorma." "As we grieve, we ask that you respect our privacy during this hard time", the statement concluded.

Franklin's profile grew somewhat with TV appearances and shows alongside greats like Thelonious Monk, Sonny Rollins, Count Basie and Duke Ellington - but her career still didn't take off until she left Columbia and switched to Atlantic Records in 1966. Earlier this week the news broke that she was seriously ill and was being surrounded by loved ones.

In the last few days she was visited by several high profile friends, including Stevie Wonder, Reverend Jesse Jackson and her ex-husband actor Glynn Turman. The whole world will miss her but will always rejoice in her remarkable legacy. In 2010, Rolling Stone magazine put her at the top of its list of the 100 greatest singers of all time, male or female. She has since appeared on the GRAMMY stage eight times, tying her with Whitney Houston for most GRAMMY performances by a female artist.

"She will forever be the Queen of Soul and so much more to all who knew her personally and through her music". My condolences go out to her sons, other family members, friends and fans.

Minutes after news of Franklin's death, tributes from fellow celebrities and public figures poured in.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

Discuss This Article