Aretha Franklin – Biography, Songs, Albums, Discography & Facts

Aretha Franklin Biography

Aretha Louise Franklin was an American singer, composer, and pianist. She has been dubbed the “Queen of Soul” and has been ranked ninth in Rolling Stone’s “100 Greatest Artists of All Time” on two occasions. Aretha Franklin is one of the best-selling musicians in the world, with over 75 million albums sold worldwide. “I Say a Little Prayer” is one of her most well-known songs.

Aretha Franklin was born on March 25, 1942, in Memphis, Tennessee, and started singing gospel as a kid at New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit, Michigan, where her father, C. L. Franklin, was a preacher. She began her music career as a recording artist for Columbia Records when she was 18 years old. Aretha Franklin earned fame and commercial success after signing with Atlantic Records in 1966, despite the fact that her career did not take off right away. Aretha Franklin’s commercial singles included “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You),” “Respect,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” “Chain of Fools,” “Think,” and “I Say a Little Prayer.”

Before having troubles with the record industry, she continued to record critically acclaimed albums such as I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You (1967), Lady Soul (1968), Spirit in the Dark (1970), Young, Gifted and Black (1972), Amazing Grace (1972), and Sparkle (1976). In 1979, she left Atlantic Records and joined Arista Records.

Before recording the breakthrough albums Jump to It (1982), Who’s Zoomin’ Who? (1985), and Aretha (1986) on the Arista label, the singer appeared in the 1980 film The Blues Brothers. Aretha Franklin returned to the Top 40 in 1998 with the Lauryn Hill-produced song “A Rose Is Still a Rose,” followed by an album of the same name.

Aretha Franklin had 112 Billboard charted singles, including 73 Hot 100 entries, 17 top-ten pop hits, 100 R&B entries, and 20 number-one R&B singles. “Ain’t No Way,” “Call Me,” “Don’t Play That Song (You Lied”),” “Spanish Harlem,” “Rock Steady,” “Day Dreaming,” “Until You Come Back to Me (That’s What I’m Gonna Do),” “Something He Can Feel,” “Jump to It,” “Freeway of Love,” “Who’s Zoomin’ Who,” and “I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)” are among the singer (a duet with George Michael). Aretha Franklin received 18 Grammy Awards, including the first eight for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance (1968–1975), a Grammy Award for Living Legend, and a Grammy Award for Lifetime Achievement.

Throughout her career, Aretha garnered various awards. She received the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the National Medal of Arts. She was the first woman to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. In 2005, she was inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame, and in 2012, she was inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame. Aretha Franklin was named the “100 Greatest Singers of All Time” by Rolling Stone in 2010. The singer received a posthumous special commendation from the Pulitzer Prize jury in 2019 “for her indelible contribution to American music and culture for more than five decades.” Aretha Franklin was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame in 2020.

Aretha died without a will on August 16, 2018, at the age of 76, in her home from a malignant pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor (pNET), which is different from the most frequent form of pancreatic cancer.

Aretha Franklin Discography

Young, Gifted and BlackSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
Soul ’69SpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
Aretha NowSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
Lady SoulSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love YouSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon

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Frequently Asked Questions

What Was Aretha Franklin’s #1 Top Selling Song?

Aretha Franklin’s top selling song was “Respect”. It was released in 1967 and reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The song has been covered by many artists, and has become an anthem for the feminist movement.

What Is Aretha Franklin’s Best Album?

There are many opinions on what Aretha Franklin’s best album is, but the consensus seems to be that her 1967 release, I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You, is her finest work. The album features some of her most iconic tracks, including “Respect” and “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You),” and is widely regarded as one of the greatest albums of all time. Franklin would go on to have a hugely successful career, releasing dozens of chart-topping albums and singles, but I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You remains her most celebrated work.

What Was Franklin’s First No 1 Hit?

Franklin’s first No 1 hit was “Respect”. The song was originally written and recorded by Otis Redding in 1965, but Franklin’s version became an anthem for the feminist and civil rights movements of the 1960s. It remained a staple of her live performances throughout her career.

What Was Aretha First Song?

Aretha’s first song was “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You).” The song was released in 1967 and became a huge hit, reaching the top of the Billboard R&B chart. Aretha would go on to have many more hits throughout her career, cementing her status as one of the greatest singers of all time.

Most Searched For Aretha Franklin Songs

(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural WomanSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
I Say a Little PrayerSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
Rolling In the Deep (The Aretha Version)SpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
Son of a Preacher ManSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
Ain’t No WaySpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
Hello SunshineSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
You Send MeSpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon
I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)SpotifyAppleYouTubeAmazon