Remembering The Queen Of Soul: Aretha Franklin Spotify Playlists
I don’t care what they say about Aretha. She can be hiding out in her house in Detroit for years. She can go decades without taking a plane or flying off to Europe. She can cancel half her gigs and infuriate every producer and promoter in the country. She can sing all kinds of jive-ass songs that are beneath her. She can go into her diva act and turn off the world. But on any given night, when that lady sits down at the piano and gets her body and soul all over some righteous song, she’ll scare the shit out of you. And you’ll know — you’ll swear — that she’s still the best fuckin’ singer this fucked-up country has ever produced.
— Billy Preston from Respect: The Life Of Aretha Franklin
I named my first born Aretha. I wanted her to have a name that carried with it power and strength and beauty and grace. Aretha Franklin’s voice was just that: power and strength, and beauty and grace. She sang with a conviction that few have matched and with a spirit that stirred countless emotions inside the hearts and minds of those lucky enough to hear Aretha sing. Billy Preston was right.
Since her death this week at 76, Aretha Franklin’s music has been playing almost non-stop in my house. The Queen Of Soul is dead, long live her majesty in the remarkable music she left us.
This edition of Saturday Stream revisits a pair of previously curated Spotify Playlists featuring The Queen Of Soul. The first is a collection of recordings culled from five of Franklin’s live albums: 1968’s Aretha In Paris, 1971’s Aretha Live at Fillmore West, 1972’s Amazing Grace and Oh Me Oh My: Aretha Live in Philly, 1972 and 2001’s VH1 Divas Live. Stream that playlist here:
The second previously offered Aretha Franklin playlist focused on The Queen Of Soul’s many collaborations during her acclaimed career. Among those appearing alongside Aretha are Ray Charles, Mavis Staples, James Brown, Bonnie Raitt, Elton John, Tony Bennett, The Blues Brothers and a trio of songs featuring session guitar playing by the late great Duane Allman. Stream that playlist here: