Saturday, July 13, 2024

Celebrating Aretha on 4th Anniversary of Her Death: Special Detroit Concert Planned


EXCLUSIVE The great Aretha Franklin passed away four years ago today and we miss her every day. Aretha was one of the bravest people ever to grace on this planet, a true artist who overcame suffering on a daily basis. She also had a wicked sense of humor. There’s so much to say that hasn’t been said yet about this remarkable woman.

In her hometown of Detroit I can tell you exclusively that Aretha will be celebrated on September in a special concert. “A Night of Respect” will be a small, semi-private affair in honor also of the 170th anniversary of the Detroit YMCA. Only 100 tickets will go on sale August 27th for the September 27th show.

The evening will feature Detroit star singer Freda Payne (“Band of Gold”) and Aretha’s cousin and long time backup singer, Brenda Franklin Corbett. I’m told all the musicians on stage will be veterans of Aretha’s bands over the years including singer Millie Scott.

What a splendid way to honor Aretha and the YMCA! Tickets should sell out almost immediately, so I hope they decide to two shows. Aretha would be very flattered. Plus there will be an exhibition of photographs from Detroit’s top shooter, Linda Solomon, at the Y.

One PS on this sad day: how did Aretha Franklin become the Queen of Soul?  There are many pretenders to the throne currently. But what they’re not getting is that Aretha was committed to the music. Everything she did was original, and there was plenty of it. Even when she adapted a song — like “Bridge Over Troubled Water” — she made it her own. And she didn’t wait six years between releases. There isn’t a year without an Aretha release, and every single one of them displayed her devotion to her craft.

We miss you, Aretha!


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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