All over the world, Aretha Franklin’s recent passing is echoing. From tributes seen in the NYC subways to acknowledgments and remarks from fans, former presidents, celebrities, and world leaders-both past and present-it’s obvious that the Queen of Soul will be dearly missed. An undeniable icon, artist, and soul music giant, Aretha Franklin was known for her instantly recognizable and unmistakable voice, chart-topping records, and style. She was also regarded as a civil rights and humanitarian icon, and even more to those closest to her.
In memoriam, below are 7 interesting facts about Aretha Franklin and also some ways that the soul, gospel, and R&B singer’s music and the American pop icon’s life, as well as style, is being remembered:
1. At the age of 16, Franklin went on tour with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and would later sing at his funeral in 1968. She also performed at the inauguration of three presidents: Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama.
2. Aretha Franklin’s song, “Respect," released in 1967, became her signature and career-defining song and would also be considered a civil rights and feminist anthem.
3. Franklin received honorary degrees from Harvard University ( 2014) as well as honorary doctorates in music from Princeton University(2012) Yale University (2010) Brown University (2009) University of Pennsylvania (2007) Berklee College of Music (2006) New England Conservatory of Music (1997) and University of Michigan (1987). Franklin was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters by Wayne State University (1990) and an honorary Doctor of Law degree by Bethune–Cookman University (1975).
4. Franklin's sisters, Erma and Carolyn, were professional musicians, as well, and spent years performing background vocals on Franklin's recordings.
5. Franklin received her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1979, had her voice declared a Michigan "natural resource" in 1985 by the state of Michigan, and would become the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.
6. Franklin was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom on November 9, 2005, by George W. Bush at the White House.
7. Inducted to the GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 2012, Franklin was described as "the voice of the civil rights movement.
Below, are some photos of Aretha Franklin over the years, as we, at Fluff, remember her for not only her accomplishments and music but also her fashion and hairstyles.
Without a doubt, Aretha Franklin's legacy will continue.
And, she will be missed.