Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Swag City: “Genius Aretha” Gets the Prize for Best Promo Ever, Series Begins March 21st


As my grandmother used to say, You can’t beat this with a stick.

National Geographic TV win the prize for Best Promo ever. They’ve sent out a record player to promote “Genius: Aretha” which begins March 21st on their channel for 4 nights.

Cynthia Erivo is amazing as Aretha, and Courtney B. Vance is outstanding as her father, Reverend CL Franklin. There are many terrific performances. The music is over the top good.

But look at this thing: a Victrola, with bluetooth, and audio outputs. All customized for Aretha. The package comes with a coffeetable book and an LP from Atlantic Records of “Aretha’s Greatest Hits.” I just played it. The sound is wonderful.

We all Victrola’s back in the day. I didn’t realize they were a company. They have beautiful record players, etc on their website. Maybe their rep will email me at Once you see these things, you will be ready to buy one.

I hope Nat Geo or someone will make this package available for Aretha fans. It’s quite the souvenir. But I’m not surprised since Clive Davis was involved in it.

And Aretha on vinyl! What a sound! But you will not be disappointed by Erivo’s versions when you hear them. Aretha would be impressed.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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