Aretha Franklin passed away this morning at age 76. The whole world is mourning, including some of music and showbiz’s biggest names.
We’ve heard directly from a few music stars:
Keith Richards: “It’s a sad day but what a glorious lady. Her voice says it all!”
Elton John: “The loss of Aretha Franklin is a blow for everybody who loves real music: Music from the heart, the soul and the Church. Her voice was unique, her piano playing underrated – she was one of my favorite pianists. I was fortunate enough to spend time with her and witness her last performance – a benefit for the Elton John AIDS Foundation at St John the Divine Cathedral. She was obviously unwell, and I wasn’t sure she could perform. But Aretha did and she raised the roof. She sang and played magnificently, and we all wept. We were witnessing the greatest soul artist of all time. I adored her and worshiped her talent. God bless her. My condolences to all her family and friends. We shared the same birthday – and that meant so much to me. The whole world will miss her but will always rejoice in her remarkable legacy. The Queen is dead. Long live the Queen.”
David Crosby: “She was a hero to me.”
Dave Mason: “Love and Respect always. What a gem.”
Collective Soul’s Ed Roland: “There are some people placed here on this earth only to sing. There are some people placed here on this earth only to inspire. Very few have ever been able to do both. Aretha Franklin was one of the exceptional few. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Aretha.”
Collective Soul’s Will Turpin: “I always loved Aretha’s performance in The Blues Brothers. She was really a Soul, Blues, and Rock N Roll all-in-one badass woman.”
Don Felder: “I remember being a young kid playing in a club and hearing ‘RESPECT’ and ‘CHAIN OF FOOLS’ and the hair standing up on the back of my neck. I had to find out who that was and once I knew, I saved up and bought every one of her records. One of the greatest talents of both the 20th and 21st century. Her soulful voice will be missed here among us mortals but I’m certain she’s rocking in heaven big time.”
Kathy Sledge: “My heart goes out to Aretha Franklin and family. I will personally never, ever forget how she was the first person to passionately reach out to my family at our sister Joni’s untimely death. How she was a ‘constant comfort’ for us in our time of need. I know that the Lord will call us all home someday… Oh, but the special ones take a part of us with them. We love you Aretha. You will forever be the reigning Queen of our Heart and Soul. Take your crown!”
Neil Giraldo: “From Memphis to ‘Motor City’ Michigan and throughout the world, the song, the voice, the passion of one of the greatest vocalists of all time has taken the journey home. R.I.P. Aretha Franklin. Peace.”
Bryan Adams: “Goodbye Aretha Franklin. Thank you for all the inspiration, and thank you for singing my song, “Never Gonna Break My Faith.”
Tommy Shaw of Styx: “My heart aches hearing that Aretha has passed away. She taught us all the difference between singing a song and testifying it. Her voice never let her down, nor did her spirit. That heavenly band just got the upgrade of an eternity. With love and R-E-S-P-E-C-T…”
Narada Michael Walden (produced four of her albums): “I am truly saddened by the passing of the Queen of Soul. Aretha set the world on fire musically. Until recently, she was sending me ideas for new songs to ignite even more fire. She was extremely, super professional, and would not show up at the studio until she was completely ready to do serious damage. What a voice! What a musician! She loved her family, loved humanity, and encouraged young musicians to do their thing. I am in awe of her talents, as we all are, but even more in awe with her humility and giving heart.”
Joe Walsh: “Thanks for being ‘THE SOUL SISTER’ to all of us. We will never forget you. Aretha was a national treasure. RIP.”
Melissa Manchester: “I want to send prayers of peace to her and my gratitude to God for Aretha Franklin. She was the voice of liberation in my youth, the light that gave me the courage to keep walking on my path. To this day, I can’t get over her rendition of ‘How I Got Over!’ She was the most high singer of excellence, matched by mostly excellent songs. The height and depth of her soulful voice and exceptional piano playing woke something in me. She was as uniquely refined as Judy [Garland] or Ella [Fitzgerald] and holds that equally important place in my heart. I was honored to have met her, sung with her and delighted to see how nonplussed she was even in front of a crowd of cameras. (I love that she’s holding her too tight shoes. She leaned on me to take them off, saying ‘That’s enough of that!’). Long live the Queen of Soul. Long live her light. Long live the sound of Aretha.”
Paul Stanley: “There will NEVER be another Aretha Franklin. Only those inspired by her as they reach for the impossible.”
Peter Frampton: “Everyone loves Aretha Franklin. She is the powerhouse voice of my life. No one can touch her passion and soul. We have used ‘Rock Steady’ as the track we hear before we go on stage for years. Her greatness as a singer and piano player inspire me to reach for the unattainable. RIP Aretha.”
Robbie Robertson: “When the legendary Atlantic Records producer Jerry Wexler told me that he had recorded ‘The Weight’ with Aretha Franklin, I thought, how does it get better than that? When I heard their version, I was thrilled that she sang the hell out of it and had Duane Allman on slide guitar. A dream come true. Aretha doesn’t scream, squall, or yell, she SINGS— from the heavens with grace and style. Sending blessings and appreciations to the Queen.”
Rod Stewart: “Always loved you, always will. Not only the Queen of Soul, but the queen of all our hearts.”
Ronnie Wood: “God Bless Aretha.”
Neal Schon: “God Bless You Aretha. Your Voice was such an Inspiration to myself and will live on forever.”
U2: “RIP. Civil rights activist, Queen of Soul, thank you.”
Eric Clapton: “So Sad… Privileged to have lived and breathed the same air, at the same time that her music healed the Earth.”
Freddie Mercury from 1984: “Aretha Franklin’s phrasing is just wonderful, so effortless. I wish I could sing like her. She sings like a dream, she doesn’t have to think about it.”
Graham Nash: “One of the greatest musical moments I ever had was standing, with Crosby, right beside her at the Grammy soundcheck in 1971, while she was singing ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water’ at the electric piano… It was unforgettable… What an incredible talent she was.”
Bob Seger: “What an other worldly talent. Legendary. Right up there with the greatest singers ever. She will be greatly missed. Irreplaceable.”
Sam Moore: “Aretha Franklin and I have been friends and label mates for more than 60 years. I adored her and I know the feelings were mutual. While I’m heartbroken that she’s gone I know she’s in the Lord’s arms and she’s not in pain or suffering anymore from the damn cancer that took her away from us. I’m going to hope, pray and count on the fact that I will see her again sometime. Rest in the Lord’s arms in love, Re.”
Gamble and Huff: “We not only admire Aretha Franklin for her singing ability, but we appreciate what she did to uplift the community. We have always been honored and elated — and are still on ‘Cloud Nine’ — for having her cover two of our songs: ‘A Brand New Me’ and ‘Christmas Just Ain’t Christmas Without the One You Love.’ While we never got the opportunity to work directly with Aretha, she was our dear friend. We send our deepest and sincere condolences out to her family. She was truly the best!”
And many more have paid tribute on social media.
This photo was taken in 2012 when Aretha & I performed at a tribute celebration for our friend Marvin Hamlisch. It’s difficult to conceive of a world without her. Not only was she a uniquely brilliant singer,but her commitment to civil rights made an indelible impact on the world
Let’s all take a moment to give thanks for the beautiful life of Aretha Franklin, the Queen of our souls, who inspired us all for many many years. She will be missed but the memory of her greatness as a musician and a fine human being will live with us forever. Love Paul
Whether it was Gospel, Blues, Jazz, R&B, Pop,or Civil Rights, Aretha Franklin was the greatest gift and the voice of a generation. She could turn any song into a hymn. She will be greatly missed here on earth, but that band in heaven just got our Angel
Rest In Peace Aretha
The queen of soul…
There will never be another.
So much love and respect from the McGraw family.
A friend of mine told me once,
“when you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced, live your life so that when you’re gone, the world cries and you rejoice.” #ArethaFranklin
The choir of angels now have the greatest voice of all time to lead, praise and join in to sing before Jesus. I wanted to share this photo because it shows just how soulful Aretha was without uttering a word. To say I was humbled to be in her presence would be an understatement.
As the One and Only ‘Queen of Soul’ Aretha Franklin was simply peerless. She has reigned supreme. and will always be held in the highest firmament of stars as the most exceptional vocalist, performer and recording artist the world has ever been privilege… https://ift.tt/2BdZudN
Aretha helped define the American experience. In her voice, we could feel our history, all of it and in every shade—our power and our pain, our darkness and our light, our quest for redemption and our hard-won respect. May the Queen of Soul rest in eternal peace.
Aretha, your music set a standard for every single lady in this industry to rise to. You have touched minds, hearts and spirits, including my own. I pray you have a smooth journey Ree Ree and hopefully I’ll get to sing with you in the Heavenly choir. Love you #QueenOfSoul