American singer, songwriter and pianist.
Pop, rock, soul and gospel.
Aretha Louise Franklin was born in 1942 in Memphis, Tennessee.
• She began her career as a child, singing gospel in church, where her father was a minister.
• She spent summers on the gospel circuit in Chicago.
• At 16 she went on tour with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, and she sang at his funeral in 1968.
• At the age of 18, she embarked on a music career as a recording artist for Columbia Records.
• Aretha’s career did not immediately take off, however, she found commercial success after signing with Atlantic Records in 1966. By the end of the 1960s, she had come to be known as the ‘Queen of Soul’.
• Her sisters, Erma and Carolyn, were professional musicians and spent years performing background vocals on her recordings.
• In 2009, she performed at President Barack Obama’s inaugural ceremony.
• Aretha Franklin has recorded 112 charted singles, including 77 ‘Hot 100’ entries, 17 top-ten pop singles, 100 R&B entries, and 20 number one R&B singles.
• She has won 18 Grammy Awards, including the first 8 awards given for ‘Best Female R&B Vocal Performance’. She is also considered one of the best-selling music artists of all time, having sold more than 75 million records worldwide.
• Aretha Franklin was the first female performer to be inducted into the ‘Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’.