The whole world is mourning the loss of Aretha Franklin. Since news of her death broke yesterday afternoon, the music industry’s biggest names have been remembering the one and only Queen Of Soul.
The majority took to social media to share their memories, with most of the tributes appearing on Twitter, with the exception of Lenny Kravitz, who wrote a piece for Billboard in remembrance. uDiscover Music are proud to present a special tribute to Aretha Franklin, by the stars in their own words.
“From the time that Dinah Washington 1st told me that Aretha was the ‘next one’ when she was 12 years old, until the present day, Aretha Franklin set the bar and she did it with the professionalism, class, grace and humility that only a true Queen could. I treasured every moment that we spent together from working in the recording studio, to performing on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, or simply hangin’ in the kitchen, and I will miss her dearly. RIP Ree-Ree… You will reign as the Queen forever.”
“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 favourite pianists. I was fortunate enough to spend time with her and witness her last performance – a benefit for [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 worshipped 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.”
”Everyone loves @ArethaFranklin, 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 b 4 we go on stage for years. Her greatness as singer/piano player inspire me to reach for the unattainable. RIP Aretha.”
“I’m very sad to hear about Aretha Franklin passing. She was one of the greatest and most emotional singers. I used to love listening to her in the sixties but her music is timeless. Love & Mercy to Aretha’s family and friends.”
“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.”
“She is the icon of all icons. I don’t know anyone who she hasn’t inspired.”
“Our Heavenly Father has chosen one of our most prolific voices to join His Heavenly Choir,” Warwick wrote in a statement. “Aretha now rests in peace!”
“I [was taught], like I’m sure she was, that we are all put on this earth for a purpose, and once that is fulfilled, we will then be ‘called home’. She sincerely will be missed throughout the musical world, family and friends.”
“Aretha Franklin was the greatest soul singer ever, and perhaps the greatest American female singer of all time. The depth of her talent was incredible, and can only be explained as a divine gift. The angels just received their lead singer.”
Mariah Carey remembered her VH1 Divas partner Aretha Franklin as “my inspiration, my mentor and my friend”.
In a series of tweets, Carey called Franklin “the ultimate singer’s singer” and “the greatest singer and musician of my lifetime”. She continued, “The power of your voice in music and in civil rights blew open the door for me and so many others. You were my inspiration, my mentor and my friend.
“You showed me I could sing the songs I wanted to sing and bring God with me. You’ve inspired millions everywhere yet never left home, never left church. Today the entire world mourns your home-going and celebrates all the brilliance you left behind.
“I will forever cherish the moments I spent in your presence. Your indelible impact was earned not only by your incomparable voice but by your bigger than life personality, wit and humor. I say a big prayer for you. You will forever have all our respect.”
“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.”
Questlove (The Roots)
“The 3 seconds it takes for #ArethaFranklin to ooze out the words “Sittin around” is as pure & creative & as honest as any singer I’ve ever seen when a performance goes beyond mere entertainment. THIS is what we need to get back to. where raw genius rises above marketing strategy & monetary reach & “likes” (because let’s face it, look at the Billboard singles/Spotify singles/iTunes singles – could she even find space to develop this talent? Or just give up & get a reality show and pray this works out? Now figure out the legions of talent that we either dismissed or passed on today or even the mesmerizing talent we’ve been shown near this level that can’t even begin to thrive in this environment without some angle) for those not in the know & wanna know, with the exception of her yet to be seen Sidney Pollack documentary Amazing Grace (her best captured 2 hours 1972 in chu’ch, in her zone in south central Los Angeles – w The Rolling Stones sitting IN THE DECON SECTION) – this Performance at the #MontreuxJazzFestival in 71 is as good as it gets: as a singer, as a bandleader (midshow she calls an audible and the brass section just gives up playing & accepts they are just happy to have best seats in the house), as a piano player – so underrated! – and the fact she has her ace band in tow too (#KingCurtis as MD & #BernardPurdie on drizzums)—-this is her most magical effortless skillful scientific talents on display. Long Live #QueenAretha.
“Aretha…So Sad….Privileged to have lived and breathed the same air, at the same time that her music healed the earth”
“I love Aretha. I’ve loved Aretha since I was a child. Jackson 5 records, Aretha Franklin records… that was my education. The Queen Of Soul says it all, and it’s absolutely true. She’s actually in my top three piano players, too, even if she didn’t open her mouth.
“I got to sing with her at Madison Square Garden. We did a duet together and got to hang out with her a bit and talk to her on the phone. She’d call me, I’d call her. [She’s] the greatest, the greatest, the greatest, the greatest. Just a sweet woman and she just felt like somebody in my family, like one of my aunts. She felt really familiar to me.
“And she was funny. I remember in rehearsal she would constantly be telling jokes and she’d start telling me stories. She’d always have some incredibly funny punch line or she’d pull a picture out of her purse of something to show you that was so funny. She was always cracking me up. Just a beautiful lady. Demands her respect, and rightfully so.”
“What beautiful music and vocal artistry you gave to the world. You are a legend and your soul will never be forgotten. Rest in peace angel of music. #ArethaFranklin”
“The world has suffered a devastating loss with the passing of Aretha Franklin. She was a dear personal friend, kindred spirit, passionate advocate of civil rights, the arts and freedom of expression.”