Published: Thu, August 16, 2018
Life&Culture | By Sue Mclaughlin

'Queen of Soul' Aretha Franklin dies at 76

'Queen of Soul' Aretha Franklin dies at 76

In a series of tweets, Sir Elton John said her death was "a blow for everybody who loves real music: music from the heart, the soul and the church".

Her bell-clear voice with its four octaves found its way into the styles of stars such as Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston - whose mother, Cissy Houston, was a backup singer for Franklin - to Alicia Keys, Beyonce, Mary J. Blige and Amy Winehouse.

She won 18 Grammy Awards and became the first female performer inducted in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Her father, the Rev. C.L. Franklin, was respected as a civil rights leader, an early advocate of "black pride" and a friend of King. During a show in Chicago in 1968, radio DJ Pervis Spann placed a crown on Franklin's head and pronounced her the "Queen of Soul".

President George W. Bush presented Franklin the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005. In 2011, she denied reports that she was suffering from pancreatic cancer, though she later admitted that she had surgery.

She performed at Ravina in September, 2017-one of eight performances at the North Shore venue over the years.

The following year, she was diagnosed with cancer, but later made a triumphant return to the stage in 2013, following surgery.

Franklin previously struggled with alcoholism, obesity and a heavy smoking habit.

Washington (CNN)Aretha Franklin, who died on Thursday, was beloved and admired by many, including presidents.

Journalist and family friend Roger Friedman broke the news of her illness late on Sunday, reporting Franklin was "gravely ill in Detroit". Truly, we lost a legend.

Aretha Franklin was was really, really good at singing the national anthem.

'Queen of Soul' Aretha Franklin dies - - Columbia, South Carolina
Amid rumours of infidelity, her parents separated in 1948 and her mother moved to Buffalo with a son from a previous relationship. A biography said that Franklin was "overwhelmed by fear and obsessed with control" and was afraid her fans would forget her.

Family members are calling the passing of the Queen of Soul one of the darkest moments in their lives.

Here we celebrate the life of a remarkable singer, musical icon and cultural pioneer, Aretha Franklin. She and Ted were married from 1961-69.

Franklin's second marriage was in 1978 to actor Glynn Turman, but the union ended in 1984. She finally achieved widespread acclaim, and commercial success, after moving to Atlantic Records in 1967.

Franklin signed with Columbia Records as a teenager.

Aretha not only had a powerful voice and world-renowned signature songs like "R-E-S-P-E-C-T" and "Think", but she was also a talent on the piano.

The Queen of Soul was in hospice care at her home, a source close to the 76-year-old singer told CNN's Don Lemon.

Last year, Franklin announced her plans to retire after the release of her new album in an interview with WDIV-TV. In 2010, she was forced to cancel to scheduled performances due to fractured ribs and abdominal pain.

She said at the time: 'I must tell you, I am retiring this year.

A Hollywood movie about her rise to stardom is now in production, starring Oscar-winner Jennifer Hudson.

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