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Beyonce dedicates concert to ailing Aretha Franklin, ends bitter feud

16 Août 2018

Stars from across the musical spectrum, from Barbra Streisand and Diana Ross to Sir Paul McCartney and Liam Gallagher, have paid homage to soul singer Aretha Franklin following her death at the age of 76.

Her publicist confirmed she died at her home in Detroit at 9.50am.

CNN reporter Don Lemon was lucky to be told that legendary singer Aretha Franklin called him one of her favorite reporters on television.

She was last seen performing in August 2017 at Elton John's AIDS Foundation Party, where Showbiz 411 claimed she was "fighting exhaustion and dehydration".

In 1987 Franklin became the first woman to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

It could be because her life, born to the family of a philandering baptist minister and ending up the female artist with the most entries in the US R&B chart's history, in many ways exemplified the trials and fortunes of many from her background. Franklin propelled her career into the 1970s with acclaimed albums like the moving gospel showcase Amazing Grace and the critically acclaimed and musically adventurous LPs Spirit in the Dark and Young, Gifted, and Black. In 2015, her piano performance of (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman honoring Carole King at the Kennedy Center Honors — a title she also earned in 1994 — reduced President Obama to tears. Without her there could have been no Donna Summer, Chaka Khan or Whitney Houston (whose mother, Cissy, was one of the Sweet Inspirations, who often sang backup for Franklin); nor would there be a Janelle Monae, a Rihanna or a Beyoncé.

That same year, Detroit named a street after her. She was surrounded by family and loved ones.

Credit PA
Credit PA

The cause was advanced pancreatic cancer. She and Ted were married from 1961-69.

Mayor of Detroit Mike Duggan also issued a statement saying: "We are all deeply saddened that Aretha has passed".

She performed at the inaugurations of two U.S. presidents, delivering a stirring rendition of "My Country 'Tis of Thee" at the January 2009 ceremony for Barack Obama, the first African-American president, while wearing a widely remarked grey hat with a big bow. "Our thoughts are with her family, her loved ones and fans everywhere".

He said she was "one of my favourite pianists", as well as a great singer.

In the last few days she was visited by several high profile friends, including Stevie Wonder, Reverend Jesse Jackson and her ex-husband actor Glynn Turman.

She was originally scheduled to perform on her 76th birthday in March in Newark and at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in April. "I'm keeping my face in a jar by the door", she tells us, remaking the meaning of the line. She often did not get along with other women singers, including her sisters, could be quick to fire underlings and was erratic when it came to showing up for concerts and appointments.

Beyonce dedicates concert to ailing Aretha Franklin, ends bitter feud