Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin

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Biography

Aretha Franklin (born 25.3.1942)
Aretha Franklin is a legendary American soul singer. She has been awarded with 20 Grammy Awards and during 1968 and 1975 the Best Female R&B Vocal Performance Grammy was nicknamed 'The Aretha Award'.

Childhood: Aretha was born in Memphis, Tennessee. Her father was a Baptist minister, married to Barbara Siggers Franklin, until they separated, when Aretha was six. Four years later, Barbara died of a heart attack, and the family moved to Detroit.

Franklin was considered something of a child prodigy, for both her vocal and piano-playing skills and she had signed a record deal with Checker Records.

Early Career & Impending Fame: Aretha's first two children were born in 1954 and 1956, putting a brief dampener on her musical career. Inspired by Sam Cooke and Dinah Washington, she decided to concentrate her efforts on pop music, rather than gospel. Turning down contracts from RCA and Motown, Aretha eventually signed with Columbia Records in 1960. Her early hits with the label included 'Rock-A-Bye Your Baby (With A Dixie Melody)', 'Today I Sing The Blues' and 'Operation Heartbreak'.

Disappointed with her lack of commercial success, Franklin switched to Atlantic Records and in 1967, released 'I Never Loved A Man (The Way I Love You). It was a top 10 hit on the Billboard Hot 100.

Her next single, 'R.E.S.P.E.C.T.' was the track that truly launched Aretha Franklin to fame. Her debut album, I Never Loved A Man The Way I Love You, soon sold over a million copies and she released a chain of hit singles, including '(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman'.

Over the next few years, Franklin continued her reign of success with tracks such as 'Think', 'I Say A Little Prayer' (originally by Dionne Warwick) and 'Spanish Harlem' (originally by Ben E. King), which reached number two in the US charts.

Labelled 'Queen of Soul' by the media, Aretha Franklin went on to sell millions of albums, including Amazing Grace (1972) and the slightly less successful Hey Now Hey (The Other Side of the Sky). In 1974, 'Until You Come Back To Me (That's What I'm Gonna Do)' was a number three hit in the US but the mid 1970s saw the rise in popularity of disco music and Aretha's favourable position with her record label began to decline. Her 1975 album You saw disappointing sales figures and the industry appeared to have shifted its focus to younger singers such as Natalie Cole, Chaka Khan and Donna Summer.

Sparkle, released in 1976, was produced by Curtis Mayfield and was Aretha's first Gold-certified album since Amazing Grace. However, its successors (Sweet Passion, Almighty Fire and La Diva) fared less well. In 1979, her contract with Atlantic Records drew to a close.

Return to Grace: In 1980, Aretha Franklin appeared in the film The Blues Brothers, singing 'Think'. Later that year, she signed a deal with Arista Records and a duet with George Benson, 'Love All the Hurt Away', launched Aretha back to the top of the charts. Her 1982 album, Jump To It, was produced by Luther Vandross and earned her her first Gold Disc award since 1976. The following year, the pair collaborated on Get It Right, with comparatively poor results.

In 1985, she released Who's Zoomin' Who?, her first ever Platinum certified album, featuring a duet with The Eurythmics and the huge hit 'Freeway of Love'. The next year, she released Aretha, which included a duet with George Michael. The cover's artwork was the last work produced by Andy Warhol before he died.

1987 saw a return to gospel for Aretha with One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism, which was followed by Through the Storm and What You See is What You Sweat.

In 1998, Franklin released A Rose Is Still A Rose: a more contemporary effort than her previous albums. The title track was produced by Lauryn Hill of the Fugees and proved to be a huge hit for Aretha. Subsequent releases include 2003's So Damn Happy and 2007 duets album, Jewels in the Crown: All-Star Duets With The Queen.



Biography by Contactmusic.com

Video - Aretha Franklin And Tyler Perry Pose On The Red Carpet For The 'Selma' New York Premiere


The New York premiere of 'Selma' took place at the Ziegfeld Theatre. The red carpet in New York was graced by the likes of Aretha Franklin, and American actor, director and screen/playwright, Tyler Perry.

Continue: Video - Aretha Franklin And Tyler Perry Pose On The Red Carpet For The 'Selma' New York Premiere

Video - Sharon Osbourne And Aretha Franklin Were Among Arrivals At 2014 Billboard Women In Music Luncheon - Part 1


Legends from Sharon Osbourne to Aretha Franklin were spotted at the 2014 Billboard Women in Music Luncheon held at Cipriani Wall Street in New York. Sharon posed alongside Universal Music Group executive vice president Michele Anthony, whose side she refused to leave even when photographers insisted on a solo shot.

Continue: Video - Sharon Osbourne And Aretha Franklin Were Among Arrivals At 2014 Billboard Women In Music Luncheon - Part 1

New York premiere of 'Selma'

Aretha Franklin - New York premiere of 'Selma' at Ziegfeld Theater - Red carpet arrivals at Ziegfeld Theater - New York City, New York, United States - Sunday 14th December 2014

Aretha Franklin

Billboard Women in Music Luncheon 2014

Aretha Franklin - Billboard Women in Music Luncheon 2014 at Cipriani Wall Street - New York, New York, United States - Friday 12th December 2014

Aretha Franklin
Aretha Franklin
Aretha Franklin
Aretha Franklin
Aretha Franklin

The Blacks Annual Gala

Aretha Franklin - The Blacks Annual Gala held at Fontainebleau Miami Beach at Fontainebleau Miami Beach - Miami Beach, Florida, United States - Sunday 26th October 2014

Aretha Franklin

Aretha Puts Diva On Top Of Diva


Aretha Franklin Adele David Letterman

Known as one of music’s great divas herself, Aretha Franklin’s newest album of covers puts diva on top of diva as the Queen of Soul tackles some of music’s biggest tunes, starting with a version of Adele’s Rolling in the Deep. The album, Aretha Franklin Sings the Great Diva Classics, is due out on 21 October and includes a number of well-known melodic masterpieces from Etta James, Gladys Knight and The Pips, Alicia Keys and The Supremes amongst others.

Aretha Franklin
Aretha Franklin is one of music's greatest soul singers

While 26-year-old Adele may seem particularly young within the company of greats such as Chaka Khan and Gloria Gaynor, many fans are excited about the cover, which went live on Monday.

Continue reading: Aretha Puts Diva On Top Of Diva

Late Show with David Letterman

Aretha Franklin - Late Show with David Letterman at Ed Sullivan Theater - New York City, United States - Monday 29th September 2014

Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin Lashes Out At Canadian Fast Food Join For Showing Her No Respect


Aretha Franklin

Legendary singer Aretha Franklin has publically scolded an employee at Johnny Rockets, a Canadian fast food franchise, for being disrespectful. The accused waitress reportedly "screamed" at Franklin for attempting to eat her takeout inside the Niagara Falls restaurant.

Aretha Franklin
Franklin was shocked by the waitress' attitude

The 72 year-old stopped by the fast food joint on Tuesday evening (July 22nd) after performing a sold-out show in Lewiston, N.Y., when the confrontation took place.

Continue reading: Aretha Franklin Lashes Out At Canadian Fast Food Join For Showing Her No Respect

R-E-S-P-E-C-T Was Not Served To Aretha Franklin In Ontario Fast Food Joint


Aretha Franklin

Who could even have the nerve to treat Aretha Franklin without R-E-S-P-E-C-T? A Johnny Rockets server in Niagara Falls, Ontario, apparently. After an apology for the shameless use of that reference, here’s the rundown of exactly what happened.

Aretha Franklin
This is not how you treat the queen of soul. Or anyone else, for that matter.

According to USA Today, Mrs Franklin had just finished performing a sold out show on Tuesday, when she decided to stop at the chain establishment for a burger. All was going relatively well, until she wanted to stay in and eat her food. This was when a server reportedly started yelling at the soul icon that she couldn’t eat her burger in, because she had ordered it “to go”. This sounds sharply, uncomfortably familiar to at least a few readers already. 

Continue reading: R-E-S-P-E-C-T Was Not Served To Aretha Franklin In Ontario Fast Food Joint

Beyoncé "Honoured & Humbled" By Hall Of Fame Exhibition


Beyonce Knowles Aretha Franklin The Supremes Peter Gabriel Beatles Nirvana Janis Joplin

Beyoncé's fabulous collection of stage outfits in addition to some of her red carpet looks will be the focus of a new exhibition hosted at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum. 

Beyonce
Beyonce's 'Single Ladies' outfit has been immortalised at Madame Tussauds.

Read More: It's "All Good" Between Solange Knowles & Jay-Z Following Elevator Fight.

Continue reading: Beyoncé "Honoured & Humbled" By Hall Of Fame Exhibition

The BET Honors 2014

Aretha Franklin - The BET Honors 2014 Hosted by Wayne Brady Honoring Aretha Franklin, Berry Gordy, Ice Cube, Ken Chenault and Carrie Mae Weems Held at Warner Theater, Washington DC - Washington DC, Maryland, United States - Saturday 8th February 2014

Aretha Franklin
Aretha Franklin
Aretha Franklin

Renee Fleming Announced For Super Bowl 2014: A Look Back On Some Of The Great Anthem Singers Through The Years


Renee Fleming Aretha Franklin Garth Brooks Beyonce Knowles Jennifer Hudson Christina Aguilera

Opera soprano Renee Fleming has been announced to sing the “Star-Spangled Banner” at the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII in MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., on Feb. 2. Fleming’s appointment is a pretty big deal, considering that the Super Bowl is easily the most watched television event of the year in the US. Last year, 111 million people nationwide tuned into the game, the infamous Super Bowl ads and, of course, the half time show. Fleming is also a bit of an unusual choice, given that the anthem has been performed by mainstream pop stars every year for the past decade.

Renee Fleming
When it comes to performing live, Fleming is a trusted veteran.

Some of the performances have been stunning and unforgettable, like Aretha Franklin’s 2006 rendition, while others, like Christina Aguilera’s 2011 blunder might be better left forgotten. Hopefully, this year’s anthem performance will have patriots in tears (the good kind), but if not, there are always these historical renditions to look back on fondly.

Continue reading: Renee Fleming Announced For Super Bowl 2014: A Look Back On Some Of The Great Anthem Singers Through The Years

Video - Miley Cyrus Covers Up More Than Usual At FGI Night Of Stars Gala - Part 2


It truly was what it said on the tin at the Fashion Group International's 30th Annual Night Of Stars held at Cipriani Wall Street in New York, as the likes of pop sensation Miley Cyrus and soul legend Aretha Franklin made appearances at the gala. Miley looked almost unrecognisable in a floor length sparkly gown with only her arms and back on show - as opposed to her preferred see through variety.

Continue: Video - Miley Cyrus Covers Up More Than Usual At FGI Night Of Stars Gala - Part 2

Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin Quick Links

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Aretha Franklin

Date of birth

25th March, 1942

Occupation

Musician

Sex

Female

Height

1.65