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Musicians, fans and friends of Aretha Franklin, the “Queen of Soul,” are honoring her legacy after news of her death Thursday.
Franklin’s publicist said she died at her home in Detroit, according to The Associated Press. She was 76.
Fans are remembering Franklin’s singular presence, stage command and legendary performances.
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 was such a timeless inspiration to me and so many others, the ultimate queen, thank you for the gift of your voice, music and unshakeable soul 🙏🏼 pic.twitter.com/me3FXBY4WZ— Christina Aguilera (@xtina) August 16, 2018
Lady Soul. The first woman inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fane, Aretha Franklin was an artist of passion, sophistication and command, whose recordings remain anthems that defined soul music. Long live the Queen. pic.twitter.com/V3khKRPyX5— Rock Hall (@rockhall) August 16, 2018
Aretha.— shonda rhimes (@shondarhimes) August 16, 2018
Salute to the Queen. The greatest vocalist I've ever known. 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽 #Aretha— John Legend (@johnlegend) August 16, 2018
Rest in Peace to an icon and the legendary Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin ❤️ pic.twitter.com/4YLQwja1Gf— SAINT HERON (@SaintHeron) August 16, 2018
We mourn the passing of Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul. Her voice will keep lifting us, through the music she gave the world. Our thoughts are with her family, her loved ones and fans everywhere. Take her hand, precious Lord, and lead her home. 🎶 pic.twitter.com/I84HTEVZU1— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) August 16, 2018
Aretha was 18 years old when she signed with Columbia records.She won 18 Grammys.These facts & figures fade away when one realizes what a huge role she has played in American life.Honoring Martin Luther King and Obama & most of all you and me with her incomparable, timeless soul pic.twitter.com/x2CCDO33k9— Michael Des Barres (@MDesbarres) August 16, 2018
Our legends are passing away. Aretha Franklin was bold and brilliant her entire career. She wasn’t held up as an activist, but she was. She not only supported the Civil Rights Movement, but the Black Panthers and other activists throughout the generations.— Shaun King (@shaunking) August 16, 2018
She will be missed. pic.twitter.com/yKUykzmmGj
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
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
The ever-reigning Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin is an iconic symbol of black pride whose music touched so many hearts and souls. As the 2008 recipient of the NAACP Vanguard Award, we know Aretha's legacy will live on and we send our love our prayers. Rest in peace. pic.twitter.com/s2CHcqbO3G— NAACP (@NAACP) August 16, 2018
Franklin’s family issued an official statement to The Hollywood Reporter:
“In one of the darkest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our heart. We have lost the matriarch and rock of our family. The love she had for her children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews and cousins knew no bounds.
“We have been deeply touched by the incredible outpouring of love and support we have received from close friends, supporters and fans all around the world. Thank you for your compassion and prayers. We have felt your love for Aretha and it brings us comfort to know that her legacy will live on. As we grieve, we ask that you respect our privacy during this difficult time.”
One of the highlights of my career was singing with #ArethaFranklin at The Tony Awards. It was an out of body experience for me. One of greatest singers of all time. You will be missed by all. https://t.co/L8dIIhyR9Y— Hugh Jackman (@RealHughJackman) August 16, 2018
She made me dance & sing. She gave me soul I didn't know I had. She will never not be in my life. Thank you. Rest in Peace brilliant Aretha— Sally Field (@sally_field) August 16, 2018
Wow. I didn’t want to wake up to Aretha gone. I loved her music so much. She lived an amazing life and gave us SOUL. Love you forever Aretha!— Quinta (@quintabrunson) 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
She performed in her hometown of Detroit in June 2017, the Detroit Free Press reported. She ended the concert with an appeal for those in the crown to, “Please keep me in your prayers,” according to the newspaper.
She last performed in November at Elton John’s AIDS Foundation gala in New York City, the News reported.
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
Our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Aretha Franklin.— Detroit Lions (@Lions) August 16, 2018
Aretha was a groundbreaker and an icon whose legacy will live on forever. pic.twitter.com/dmYrfpDOjC
Queen... My Queen. pic.twitter.com/6olvvLPISd— Anita Baker (@IAMANITABAKER) August 16, 2018
Deeply saddened by the passing of a beloved friend and queen/warrior Aretha Franklin. Her contributions are legendary both personally and societally. We hope you take a pause today to remember the life of a beautiful soul. pic.twitter.com/ce4ht2g0ha— Reverend Al Sharpton (@TheRevAl) August 16, 2018
The Queen of Soul has left this earth to sit on her throne in heaven. How blessed we were to hear the best that God had to offer in her voice. RESPECT!— Lenny Kravitz (@LennyKravitz) August 16, 2018
📷: Mark Seliger pic.twitter.com/v9OxtyrZ74
Franklin was born March 25, 1942, in Memphis, Tennessee. Her family moved to Detroit when she was young, according to Fox13Memphis.
Franklin started singing when she was young, with encouragement from her mother, Barbara, and her father, the Rev. C.L. Franklin. She started out singing gospel but launched a career in secular music after she turned 18. She rose to fame after signing in 1967 with Atlantic Records.
Franklin’s career, spanning six decades, has spawned hits including “Respect,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” and “Chain of Fools.” She’s considered one of the best-selling artists of all time, selling more than 75 million albums worldwide.
Franklin was inducted in 1987 to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. She’s earned 18 Grammy Awards and a Presidential Medal of Freedom for her work. In 2005, then-President George W. Bush described Franklin as “a woman of achievement, deep character and a loving heart.”