Collaborators, Fans React to Aretha Franklin’s Death

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Following Aretha Franklin’s death on Thursday, an outpouring of emotion and appreciation for her work washed over social media channels. Here are a few selections, followed by excerpts from interviews with a pair of musicians who had the chance to work with the singer.

“She knew every piece of music that was going on around her. But what really touched my heart was that you could feel her spirit. She spoke like she sang, so you could feel the emotion flowing from her. It was all natural. That’s what was so amazing about her vocals. Some people are good live and not in the studio, and some people are good in the studio and not live. Aretha Franklin was the whole package.” —Joan Collaso, a Chicago-based vocalist, who sang backup with Franklin on her final tour

“She was very kind to me. In this business, most singers are not that sensitive or personal toward their band members. In playing with her, her piano playing was very touching and special.” —Chuck Rainey, a bassist who played on several Franklin albums, including Young, Gifted And Black (1972), Amazing Grace (1972) and With Everything I Feel in Me (1974) DB



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August 2021
Carla Bley
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