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Posts Tagged ‘aretha franklin’

Aretha Franklin

Posted by purplemary54 on August 16, 2018

Name a great female singer, any great female singer, and each and every one of them will pale in comparison to Aretha Franklin.  They all have their moments of greatness, to be sure.  They are all talented within their own rights, possessing style and personality that lets their individuality shine.  But none were ever as consistently great as ‘Retha.  The proper definition of the word awesome is inspiring awe, that feeling of vast wonderment in the universe and whatever spirit moves you.  Aretha Franklin was awesome.

I’m not going to try to explain why.  Yes, she had natural talent that was honed by training in gospel choirs and production studios.  Yes, she had charisma and grace and the intelligence to change her style with the times.  Yes, she was physically beautiful.  But there was something else there, something ineffable and intangible.  Something in her eyes that told you whatever she felt when she was singing was profound and deep and metaphysical.  Supernatural, if you will.  It’s the same thing that makes Eric Clapton such an unbelievable guitar player, despite being less technically skilled than many others.  There is something that she touches with her voice that almost no other singer of any gender will ever be able to get close to touching.

Many tributes to Aretha will choose “Respect” or “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You),”  or even “Natural Woman.”  I’ll just leave with this, possibly my favorite of hers.  It was just as much about respect for yourself and your fellow human beings as “Respect,” but with a focus not just on the relationship between men and women, but that between blacks and whites.  I only wish it weren’t still relevant.  After all, Aretha isn’t here to knock some sense into our sorry asses anymore.

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Posted in Music, Obituaries, R&B/Soul | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Happy Monday!

Posted by purplemary54 on March 25, 2013

First of all, I would like to wish a Happy Passover to any Jewish readers I might have out there.  (I  learned what little I know about Jewish holidays and observances from reading the All of a Kind Family series of books as a child.  They were awesome, and I highly recommend them.)

Second, today is the birthday of not one, but two great musical voices.  Aretha Franklin was born in 1942, and Elton John was born in 1947 (making them a year younger than my father and the same age as my mother, respectively).  Truly, that qualifies today as one of the happiest Mondays ever–at least for music fans.  While both singers are distinctive and different, Aretha and Elton are both incredibly talented and influential, and I adore them both.  They don’t really need any commentary or editorializing, so just enjoy the clips I chose.  These might not be the best known of their hits, but they’re two of my personal favorites.

(I would’ve used a good live clip of this, but I didn’t like any of the ones I found.)

(It’s kind of cool watching all those dancers get funky around him.)

Posted in Music, R&B/Soul, Rock | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »