Aretha Franklin, who became known as “The Queen of Soul” over the course of a several-decades-long musical career, died on Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018. The “Respect” singer was 76.
Franklin, who had been battling advanced pancreatic cancer, died at her home in Detroit, according to one of her publicists. She became the first woman voted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987 and won 18 Grammys throughout her career.
In the early 1970s, she dominated the music charts with “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You),” “Baby, I Love You,” “Chain of Fools,” “Think,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” “Do-Right Woman” and “Respect,” a cover of a Redding tune that became a song of empowerment during the civil rights era.
Her last large-scale performance took place at Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City during the November 2017 Elton John AIDS Foundation concert. In an interview with the Detroit Free Press on Aug. 16, 2017, Franklin said she had wanted to open a nightclub in her hometown of Detroit called “Aretha’s,” where she planned to sing occasionally.
I’m sitting in prayer for the wonderful golden spirit Aretha Franklin.— Ms. Ross (@DianaRoss) August 16, 2018
Today we have lost one of the greatest. She will always be remembered and admired. Aretha Franklin, rest in peace. We love you.— Ricky Martin (@ricky_martin) August 16, 2018
Lucky enough to have seen Aretha live exactly once, and this was it.— Lin-Manuel Miranda (@Lin_Manuel) August 16, 2018
Thank you for the music, we will be listening to you forever https://t.co/aMHIBFaTAs
As the One and Only ‘ Queen of Soul ‘ Aretha Franklin was simply peerless. She has reigned supreme, and will always be held in the highest firmament of stars as the most exceptional vocalist, performer and recording artist the world has ever been privileged to witness (1/3)— Annie Lennox (@AnnieLennox) August 16, 2018
An unbelievable woman and voice. It was an honor to meet and perform with the Queen of Soul. RIP Aretha Franklin ❤️💔https://t.co/BQBtdPuoZO— Shania Twain (@ShaniaTwain) August 16, 2018
This photo was taken in 2012 when Aretha & I performed at a tribute celebration for our friend Marvin Hamlisch. It’s difficult to conceive of a world without her. Not only was she a uniquely brilliant singer,but her commitment to civil rights made an indelible impact on the world pic.twitter.com/Px9zVB90MM— Barbra Streisand (@BarbraStreisand) August 16, 2018
My prayers are with Aretha Franklin & her family during this difficult time 🙏🏾 LOOK BELOW @ what I tweeted at the top of the year we MUST CELEBRATE the Living Legends while they are here to see it. So many have given us decades of Timeless music…❤️ https://t.co/VVacLxcMSI— Missy Elliott (@MissyElliott) August 13, 2018
Salute to the Queen. The greatest vocalist I've ever known. 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽 #Aretha— John Legend (@johnlegend) August 16, 2018
The loss of @ArethaFranklin 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. pic.twitter.com/ug5oZYywAz— Elton John (@eltonofficial) August 16, 2018
Mourning the loss today of @ArethaFranklin who shared her spirit and talent with the world. She deserves not only our RESPECT but also our lasting gratitude for opening our eyes, ears and hearts. Rest in eternal peace, my friend.— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) August 16, 2018
It was a double thrill for me to perform on the stage of the Metropolitan Opera on my 85th birthday and have the Queen of Soul (and heart) Aretha Franklin singing with me….she will be missed by the world. pic.twitter.com/74VM9IYejI— Tony Bennett (@itstonybennett) August 16, 2018
Rest In Peace to our Queen of Soul. Her contribution to music and to the empowerment and enrichment of our hearts, Spirits and souls is immeasurable.— Ms. Lauryn Hill (@MsLaurynHill) August 16, 2018
Thank you Ms. Aretha Franklin for sharing your anointed gifts with us. They changed the world. We are deeply grateful!
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. pic.twitter.com/bfASqKlLc5— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) August 16, 2018
Aretha Franklin is the reason why I sing from that part deep inside of me that few could ever reach. She was my favorite and will always be. What a gift she has left all of us with her musical footprints. There will never be another like her. She was truly special. #QueenOfSoul— Kelly Clarkson (@kelly_clarkson) August 16, 2018
The Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, is dead. She was a great woman, with a wonderful gift from God, her voice. She will be missed!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 16, 2018