Celebrating Aretha Franklin (Queen of Soul)

Motown raised Aretha Franklin begin her career singing gospel as a child, in her father’s C.L. Franklin’s church. Born on March 25, 1942 in Memphis Tennessee, Franklin begin to sing secular music, at age 18, by the late 60’s she had acheive success with hits such as, “You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman”, “Respect” and “Think”.

In 1976, Franklin worked on the soundtrack to the film, “Sparkle”, with Curtis Mayfield. The album yielded Franklin’s final top 40 hit of the decade, “Something He Can Feel”, which also peaked at number-one on the R&B chart.

In 1980 Franklin signed with “Arista Records “, and out if this union came the plantium record Who’s Zooming Who”. Franklin also made an acclaimed guest role as a waitress in the comedy musical, The Blues Brothers.

By the end of the 80’s Franklin was recording her third gospel album and by the mid to late 90’s, Franklin returned to the top 40 with the Lauryn Hill-produced song, “A Rose Is Still a Rose”, the album of the same name went gold. That same year, Franklin earned international acclaim for her performance of “Nessun Dorma” at the Grammy Awards. Her final Arista album, “So Damn Happy”, was released in 2003 and featured the Grammy-winning song, “Wonderful”.

She later made international headlines for performing “My Country ‘Tis of Thee” at President Barack Obama’s inaugural ceremony.

This is a snippet of the Queen of Soul contribution to the world and music. Aretha Franklin music is timeless, it crosses all broder lines. The Queen of Soul has all generes checked, R&B, Gospel, Opera,and Rock.

Franklin eventually recorded a total of 112 charted singles on Billboard, including 77 Hot 100 entries, 17 top ten pop singles, 100 R&B entries and twenty number-one R&B singles, becoming the most charted female artist in the chart’s history.

I’ll just leave you with this “Get on her level.”

If I had to be on an island and could only bring my top five albums “Sparkle” is on that list. Take a listen at one of my favorite singles.

The Queen of Soul succumb to pancreatic cancer at age 76 surrounded by family and friends.Aretha Franklin was laid to rest August the 31st at Greater Grace church in Detroit Michigan. More than 40 artists performed at a concert in her honor, including Gladys Knight, the Four Tops, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Raheem DeVaughn, Johnny Gill and Angie Stone, accompanied by the Ralphe Armstrong Band and Kern Brantley Band. Mrs. Franklin home going was also stream live for the world. Mrs. Franklin was so much more that a singer, this queen was a pioneer for civil rights, a trendsetter for women issues and a true people person.


Tara Staples, Founder & Editor
Tara  Staples is a Detroit based Blogger with an BA in English from Marygrove College, She is an aspiring screenplay writer who enjoys films, food, music, and travel.

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