Aretha Franklin

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Franklin, Aretha,

1942–2018, American singer and pianist, b. Memphis. The daughter of the well-known minister C. L. Franklin, she began singing in the choir of his Detroit Baptist church, where she soon became a soloist. A singer of unique power, the "Queen of Soul" turned from gospel to secular music in the late 1950s. Signed by John HammondHammond, John Henry,
1910–87, American record producer; blues, jazz, and rock promoter; and music critic, b. New York City. A member of the wealthy Vanderbilt family, he entered the music business in the early 1930s.
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 of Columbia Records in 1960, she moved to Atlantic Records in 1967, where she recorded many of her most famous hits. Franklin was a master of many genres, from gospel to jazz, rhythm and blues to pop, with a four-octave range and enormous emotional strength, and many regarded her as the greatest female vocalist of the 20th cent. She is particularly known for such hits as "Respect" (her signature song, it became an anthem for both the civil-rights and women's movements), "(You Make Me Feel like) A Natural Woman," "Chain of Fools," "Freeway of Love," and "Who's Zoomin' Who?" She was (1987) the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and received 18 Grammy awards as well as a lifetime achievement award (1994). Awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005, she sang at President Obama's inauguration in 2009.


See her autobiography (with D. Ritz, 1999); biography by D. Ritz (2014); A. Pollack, dir., Amazing Grace (documentary, 2018).

Franklin, Aretha

(1942–  ) soul singer; born in Memphis, Tenn. Daughter of Detroit clergyman C. L. Franklin, she sang in church choirs as a child and at age 14 joined her father's traveling gospel revue. Although she began recording at age 18, it was at Atlantic Records beginning in 1966 that she worked with experienced rhythm-and-blues musicians and was encouraged to use her gospel roots. In 1967 she gained fame with the release "I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You." This and four subsequent number one hits ensured a large following. In the 1980s, recording for Arista, she overcame a creative slump and added 3 Grammies and 2 gold records to the many she has earned during her career. Her passionate virtuoso singing and tight arrangements give her music an eloquent intensity. In 1986 she starred in the retrospective television special, Aretha! and in 1989 she was the subject of a documentary video, Aretha Franklin: Queen of Soul. Her highly flamboyant live performances, such as that in the Radio City Music Hall in 1990, never failed to draw full audiences.
References in periodicals archive ?
Above, from left, Springsteen, Stevie Wonder, Sting and Jeff Beck and Aretha Franklin with Annie Lennox Hits: Ozzy Osbourne and Simon and Garfunkel It's only rock'n'roll but we like it: Bono and Jagger.
Washington, Nov 30 (ANI): Legendary singer Aretha Franklin has topped a list of the 'Hottest 100 Female Singers' for her signature song 'Respect'.
The Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, packed Hanover Theatre Thursday night.
As Atlantic Records grew from a small independent label into a major national music company, it became a stronghold both of soul, with Aretha Franklin and Otis Redding, and of rock, with the Stones, Led Zeppelin and Yes.
Higher Ground: Stevie Wonder Aretha Franklin, Curtis Mayfield and the Rise and Fall of American Soul by Craig Werner, Crown March 2004 $24.
Our divas include Diana Ross with Upside Down and the first lady of soul, Aretha Franklin, with Try A Little Tenderness.
ARETHA FRANKLIN affirms her status as the Queen of Soul with her new recording, SO DAMN HAPPY (Arista), and she makes it clear in spirit and song that she is feeling good.
US soul diva Aretha Franklin will perform for the Queen at her Golden Jubilee celebrations next year, the singer has announced.
Aretha Franklin might be the Queen of Soul, but Tina Turner will always be the Queen of Sass.
The book argues convincingly that black feminists be given, in the words immortalized by Aretha Franklin, a little more R-E-S-P-E-C-T.