Sunday, 09 May, 2021


Star-studded funeral honours Aretha Franklin

JEFF KOWALSKY  AFP  Getty Images More JEFF KOWALSKY AFP Getty Images More
Hannah Rogers | 31 August, 2018, 16:53

Sabrina Owens, Franklin's niece, told the AP she started putting thoughts to paper about events earlier this year as her aunt's health failed.

Former U.S. president Bill Clinton, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Al Sharpton and childhood friend Smokey Robinson are among the high-profile figures scheduled to speak at the invitation-only service, which will be punctuated throughout with performances.

The singer has returned to the church where her father was once the pastor, and where she first began singing in the gospel choir, before she began her road to stardom aged 14.

Since Franklin's August 16 death at 76, Owens said a close group she described as "Aretha's angels" have "worked tirelessly" and have been guided by a single question: 'What would Aretha want?'

Page Six reports the reigning diva will receive new outfits for a third viewing on Thursday.

A funeral for friends, family, dignitaries and special guests will be held on Friday at Detroit's Greater Grace Temple, with performances from stars like Ariana Grande, Stevie Wonder, Faith Hill, Jennifer Hudson, Fantasia, Jennifer Holliday and Franklin's son, Edward.

Organizers of Aretha Franklin's funeral insist today will be a "spiritual" and not a "concert, show or awards production". The tribute is a nod to Franklin's funky '80s tune, "Freeway of Love", which prominently featured the auto in the lyrics and video.

Her signature song, a feminist anthem, became a rallying cry as African-Americans rose up nationwide in the 1960s to fight peacefully for racial equality.

"Aretha Franklin is awesome to me". Woodlawn also is the final resting place for Parks and numerous Motor City's musical elite, including members of the Four Tops. "I think there will be some up hands clapping and feet dancing". On Tuesday, she wore a red dress with matching heels and on Wednesday she was in blue.

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