The night Aretha Franklin brought the nation’s first black president to tears

Posted August 17, 2018

Publicist Gwendolyn Quinn told The Associated Press through a family statement that Franklin passed Thursday at 9:50 a.m.at her home in Detroit.

And Miami's own musical queen, Gloria Estefan, added her heartfelt tribute: "For as long as I can remember, Aretha Franklin has been the absolute zenith, the guiding light, the master for any girl that aspired to sing or even just appreciated someone at the top of their game. We have lost the matriarch and rock of our family". We have felt your love for Aretha and it brings us comfort to know that her legacy will live on.

Her records sold millions of copies and the music industry couldn't honor her enough.

"Amazing Grace" (1972): After more than a decade in which she focused on pop material, Franklin returned with renewed intensity to the gospel music of her childhood in what has often been called the best-selling gospel album of all time.

In 1993, Franklin delivered a thrilling rendition of "I Dreamed a Dream" from Les Misérables during President Bill Clinton's inauguration.

Her Baptist minister father was the organiser behind the 1963 Detroit Walk to Freedom - the largest-ever demonstration for civil rights in the USA until the March on Washington later that year, when the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr made his "I have a dream" speech.

"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", they said in a statement. Five years later - because a diva never forgets! - she sent a fax to the AP to clarify Warwick's error. I'm going to hope, pray and count on the fact that I will see her again sometime.

Liz Smith, a columnist at the New York Post wrote that Aretha Franklin was "much too bosomy" to wear certain types of clothes, but that her confidence makes it work.

"The loss of Aretha Franklin is a blow for everybody who loves real music: Music from the heart, the soul and the Church".

In February 2017, Franklin announced she would stop touring, but she continued to book concerts.

'She was obviously unwell, and I wasn't sure she could perform. In 1987, she was the first female artist to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

A 28-year-old woman who gave her name only as Bianca was taking photographs with her family nearby.

2005: Honoured with highest award given to a civilian, The Presidential Medal of Freedom.