Earlier this month singers and music lovers everywhere mourned the death of one of music’s greats: eighteen-time Grammy winner and “Queen of Soul” Aretha Franklin. The legendary singer passed away at her home in Detroit on August 16th at age 76 after a severe bout of pancreatic cancer.
Franklin first dazzled the world with her soulful R&B hits, making a household name for herself with her chart-topping ‘60s classic “Respect.” Other popular songs include “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” and “Until You Come Back To Me.”
Road to Music Stardom
Before becoming the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and landing 20 No 1 singles on the R&B chart, Franklin’s foray into music began as a gospel singer at her father’s church. There she sang and played piano, eventually recording her first album at just 14 years old.
From gospel to pop and one-of-a-kind covers, Franklin made her mark on the music industry in numerous ways and earned a loyal and passionate fanbase along the way. Her powerhouse vocals and culturally relevant songs not only made her an iconic figure in music, but also a voice of hope and change, specifically for the Civil Rights movement.
While Franklin’s peak years were mainly in the ‘60s and 70’s, she continued to release new music throughout the ‘80s and ‘90s, and performed up until 2017.
Her most noteworthy moments from recent years include singing at President Barack Obama’s Presidential inauguration in 2009, covering Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” in 2014 (marking her 100th R&B chart hit), and last performing at Elton John’s AIDS Foundation gala.
During her lifetime, Franklin sold over 75m records, earned 77 titles on Billboard’s Hot 100, and was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
A Lasting Legacy
Aretha Franklin’s immense success and influence on the music world is unlike any other and can not be adequately expressed. She clearly paved the way for countless singers, gave hope to aspiring vocalists everywhere, and inspired others to dream big. The loss of the “Queen of Soul” is unmeasurable, and fans will continue to mourn her for years to come.
If you share Aretha’s passion for singing and dream of creating chart-topping hits of your own one day, contact Scottsdale Music Academy for help. Our one-on-one vocal lessons and group music lessons can help you become the singer of your dreams!