Aretha Franklin, the undisputed Queen of Soul, dies at age 76

Local News

Aretha Franklin — the first woman to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, dubbed the Queen of Soul for powerful anthems like “Respect” and “Chain of Fools” — died on Thursday at her home in Detroit. She was 76 years old.

The singer’s publicist confirmed the news to the Associated Press.

Earlier this week, members of her family had told NBC affiliate WDIV-TV in Detroit that she was “gravely ill.” The station reported that Franklin had asked for prayers.

Born March 25, 1942, in Memphis, Tennessee, to C.L. Franklin, the most prominent black Baptist preacher in America during the mid-20th century, and a gospel singer, Aretha Louise Franklin began performing in front of her father’s congregation at New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit, which she considered her hometown. She became a star on gospel caravan tours with her father, a compelling preacher known as “The Million Dollar Voice,” who became her manager when she was 14.

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