Pages

Thursday, 16 August 2018

Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin dies aged 76 at her Detroit home after a long battle with pancreatic cancer surrounded by her friends and family who say, 'We have lost our matriarch and rock'

  • Aretha Franklin died at 9.50am on Thursday, aged 76, surrounded by family at her home in Detroit
  • Franklin, a mother-of-four, had been battling advanced pancreatic cancer and was under hospice care
  • Her family said they were devastated to have 'lost the matriarch and rock of our family'
  • The undisputed Queen of Soul had announced her retirement from touring in November last year
  • Franklin recorded hundreds of tracks and had dozens of hits over the span of a half century 
  • She won 18 Grammy awards and in 1987 became the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
  • Franklin endured the exhausting grind of celebrity and personal troubles dating way back to childhood
  • She had two sons by the time she was 16 and was often in turmoil as she struggled with her weight, alcoholism, family and financial problems for years
  • Elton John, Barbra Streisand, Oprah and The Clintons were among the first to pay tribute to the singer
  • Barack and Michelle Obama also wrote touching notes saying she 'helped define the American experience'
Aretha Franklin, the long-reigning Queen of Soul, died on Thursday morning at age 76 from advanced pancreatic cancer.
She passed away at 9.50am surrounded by family and friends at her home in Detroit where she had been under hospice care.
Franklin's family said her oncologist confirmed her cause of death was due to the pancreatic cancer she had been battling.
'In one of the darkest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our heart. We have lost the matriarch and rock of our family,' a statement from her family read.
'We have been deeply touched by the incredible outpouring of love and support we have received from close friends, supporters and fans all around the world. Thank you for your compassion and prayers. 
'We have felt your love for Aretha and it brings us comfort to know that her legacy will live on. As we grieve, we ask that you respect our privacy during this difficult time.' 
Aretha Franklin, the long-reigning Queen of Soul, died on Thursday morning at age 76 from advance pancreatic cancer. She is pictured at her last public performance in New York in November last year
Funeral arrangements will be announced in the coming days.
Franklin, who sang with matchless style on such classics as 'Think,' 'I Say a Little Prayer' and her signature song, 'Respect', announced her retirement from touring last year. 
The mother-of-four had battled various undisclosed health issues in recent years.
Her last public performance was at Elton John's AIDS Foundation gala in New York in November last year.  
A professional singer by her late teens and a superstar by her mid-20s, Franklin had long ago settled any arguments over who was the greatest popular vocalist of her time.
She recorded hundreds of tracks and had dozens of hits over the span of a half century, including 20 that reached No. 1 on the R&B charts. 
Her records sold millions of copies and the music industry couldn't honor her enough. Franklin won 18 Grammy awards and in 1987 she became the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. 
Clive Davis, the music mogul who brought her to Arista Records and helped revive her career in the 1980s, said he was 'devastated' by her death.
'She was truly one of a kind. She was more than the Queen of Soul. She was a national treasure to be cherished by every generation throughout the world,' he said. 'Apart from our long professional relationship, Aretha was my friend. Her loss is deeply profound and my heart is full of sadness.'
Smokey Robinson, who grew up with her in Detroit, said: 'This morning my longest friend in this world went home to be with our father. I will miss her so much but I know she's at peace.'
Franklin was the undisputed Queen of Soul who sang with matchless style on such classics as ¿Think,¿ ¿I Say a Little Prayer¿ and her signature song, ¿Respect¿, and stood as a cultural icon around the globe
Franklin was the undisputed Queen of Soul who sang with matchless style on such classics as 'Think,' ″I Say a Little Prayer' and her signature song, 'Respect', and stood as a cultural icon around the globe
Franklin won 18 Grammy awards throughout her illustrious career, including in 1972 for 'Bridge Over Troubled Waters' (left) and in 1975 for 'Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thing' (right)
Her last public performance was at Elton John's AIDS Foundation gala in New York in November last year (pictured above)
Her last public performance was at Elton John's AIDS Foundation gala in New York in November last year (pictured above)
Throughout her career, fellow singers bowed to her eminence and political and civic leaders treated her as a peer. 
The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was a longtime friend, and she sang at the dedication of King's memorial, in 2011. She was also a financial lifeline to the civil rights organization he co-founded. Franklin also performed at the funeral for civil rights pioneer Rosa Parks in 2005.


She also performed at the inaugurations of Presidents Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter and Barack Obama. 
Franklin was awarded the National Medal of the Arts by Clinton and President George W. Bush awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor, in 2005.
Her best-known appearance with a president was in January 2009 when she sang 'My Country 'tis of Thee' at Obama's inauguration. She wore a gray felt hat with a huge, Swarovski rhinestone-bordered bow that became an Internet sensation and even had its own website.
In 2015, she brought Obama and others to tears with a triumphant performance of 'Natural Woman' at a Kennedy Center tribute to the song's co-writer, Carole King. 
Soon after news of her death - which came on the same day as Elvis Presley and Babe Ruth - was announced, celebrities took to social media to mourn the loss of the Queen of Soul. Elton John, Barbra Streisand and The Clintons were among those to share touching notes about Franklin.
The Obamas, who considered Franklin a close friend, released a joint statement, saying they could 'feel our history' in Franklin's voice when she sang.
Franklin endured the exhausting grind of celebrity and personal troubles dating way back to childhood. She had two sons by the time she was 16 to two different fathers and was often in turmoil as she struggled with her weight, alcoholism, family problems and financial predicaments. 
Her best-known appearance with a president was in January 2009 when she sang at Barack Obama's inauguration. Her gray felt hat with a Swarovski rhinestone-bordered bow became an Internet sensation and even had its own website
Her best-known appearance with a president was in January 2009 when she sang at Barack Obama's inauguration. Her gray felt hat with a Swarovski rhinestone-bordered bow became an Internet sensation and even had its own website
Franklin  
Franklin was treated as a peer by political and civic leaders having performed at multiple inaugurations. She is pictured above with Barack Obama in Washington in 2015 and Bill Clinton in 2017
Franklin regularly performed at AIDS benefit concerts throughout her career. She is pictured performing at the 'Aretha Franklin: Duets', an AIDS benefit concert for the Gay Men's Health Crisis in New York, back in 1993 as singers Smokey Robinson, Gloria Estefan, Rod Stewart, Bonnie Raitt and actors Dustin Hoffman and Robert De Niro look on
Franklin regularly performed at AIDS benefit concerts throughout her career. She is pictured performing at the 'Aretha Franklin: Duets', an AIDS benefit concert for the Gay Men's Health Crisis in New York, back in 1993 as singers Smokey Robinson, Gloria Estefan, Rod Stewart, Bonnie Raitt and actors Dustin Hoffman and Robert De Niro look on

ARETHA FRANKLIN TRIBUTES: STARS SHARE TOUCHING NOTES AFTER LEGEND DIES

Soon after news of her death was announced, celebrities took to social media to mourn the loss of the Queen of Soul. Elton John, Barbra Streisand, Oprah, Barack Obama and The Clintons were among those to share touching notes about Franklin.
Clive Davis, the music mogul who brought her to Arista Records and helped revive her career in the 1980s, said he was 'devastated' by her death.
Smokey Robinson, who grew up with her in Detroit, said: 'This morning my longest friend in this world went home to be with our father. I will miss her so much but I know she's at peace.' 
   

Tribute: Barbra Streisand wrote that it's 'difficult to conceive of a world without her' in a moving caption paired with a throwback photo as the legendary singers posed before a performance in 2012'Let¿s all take a moment to give thanks for the beautiful life of Aretha Franklin, the Queen of our souls, who inspired us all for many many years,' Paul McCartney shared
Natural woman: Diana Ross wrote that she was 'sitting in prayer for the wonderful golden spirit Aretha Franklin'




She was married from 1961 to 1969 to her manager, Ted White, and their battles are widely believed to have inspired her performances on several songs, including '(Sweet Sweet Baby) Since You've Been Gone,' ″Think' and her heartbreaking ballad of despair, 'Ain't No Way.' 
Franklin married actor Glynn Turman in 1978 in Los Angeles but returned to her hometown of Detroit the following year after her father was shot by burglars and left semi-comatose until his death in 1984. She and Turman divorced that year. 
Franklin, who was born March 25, 1942, in Memphis, Tennessee, grew up with her father Rev. C.L. Franklin in Detroit. He was among the most prominent Baptist ministers of his time and recorded dozens of albums of sermons and music.
It was at her father's New Bethel Baptist Church that Franklin, who began playing piano at age 8, learned the gospel fundamentals that would make her a soul institution. 
Music was the family business and performers from Sam Cooke to Lou Rawls were guests at the Franklin house. In the living room, a shy young Aretha awed friends with her playing on the grand piano.
Franklin was in her early teens when she began touring with her father and she released a gospel album in 1956 through J-V-B Records. Four years later, she signed with Columbia Records producer John Hammond, who called Franklin the most exciting singer he had heard since a vocalist he promoted decades earlier, Billie Holiday.
She recorded several albums for Columbia Records over the next six years. She had a handful of minor hits, including 'Rock-A-Bye Your Baby With a Dixie Melody' and 'Runnin' Out of Fools'. 
Franklin jumped to Atlantic Records when her contract ran out in 1966. Her hits, including 'I Say a Little Prayer,' 'Natural Woman' and 'Respect' soon followed.
In 1968, Franklin was pictured on the cover of Time magazine and had more than 10 Top 20 hits in 1967 and 1968. At a time of rebellion and division, Franklin's records were a musical union.
She was married from 1961 to 1969 to her manager, Ted White, (above) and their battles are widely believed to have inspired her performances on several songs
She was married from 1961 to 1969 to her manager, Ted White, (above) and their battles are widely believed to have inspired her performances on several songs
Her records sold millions of copies and the music industry couldn't honor her enough. Franklin won 18 Grammy awards and in 1987 she became the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Franklin had a huge impact on civil rights through her lifetime. She is pictured above with Rev. Jesse Jackson and Tom Todd at the Operation PUSH Soul Picnic in New York in 1972
Franklin had a huge impact on civil rights through her lifetime. She is pictured above with Rev. Jesse Jackson and Tom Todd at the Operation PUSH Soul Picnic in New York in 1972
Her popularity faded during the 1970s despite such hits as the funky 'Rock Steady' and such acclaimed albums as the intimate 'Spirit in the Dark.' But her career was revived in 1980 with a cameo appearance in the smash movie 'The Blues Brothers' and her switch to Arista Records. 
Franklin collaborated with such pop and soul artists as Luther Vandross, Elton John, Whitney Houston and George Michael, with whom she recorded a No. 1 single, 'I Knew You Were Waiting (for Me).' Her 1985 album 'Who's Zoomin' Who' received some of her best reviews and included such hits as the title track and 'Freeway of Love.' 
Franklin occasionally performed at her father's New Bethel Baptist church throughout her career and recorded her 1987 gospel album 'One Lord One Faith One Baptism' live there. 
Fame never eclipsed Franklin's charitable works, or her loyalty to Detroit. Franklin sang the national anthem at Super Bowl in her hometown in 2006, after grousing that Detroit's rich musical legacy was being snubbed when the Rolling Stones were chosen as halftime performers.
She only released a few albums over the past two decades, including 'A Rose is Still a Rose,' which featured songs by Sean 'Diddy' Combs, Lauryn Hill and other contemporary artists, and 'So Damn Happy,' for which Franklin wrote the gratified title ballad. 
Following her death on Thursday, Franklin's music quickly climbed the iTunes' charts with her '30 Greatest Hits' album hitting the No. 1 spot , while 'Respect' reached No. 2 on the songs' charts. 
More songs from Franklin, including '(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,' ''Think,' ''Chain of Fools' and 'I Say A Little Prayer,' were in the Top 40.
Franklin attends the Hollywood Christmas parade with her husband actor Glynn Turman (right) and son Kelf (center) in November 1978. She married Turman in '78 and divorced later that year
Franklin attends the Hollywood Christmas parade with her husband actor Glynn Turman (right) and son Kelf (center) in November 1978. She married Turman in '78 and divorced later that year
 In 1968, Franklin was pictured on the cover of Time magazine and had more than 10 Top 20 hits in 1967 and 1968. She is pictured above performing on prime time television, The Andy Williams Show, that aired in 1969
In 1968, Franklin was pictured on the cover of Time magazine and had more than 10 Top 20 hits in 1967 and 1968. She is pictured above performing on prime time television, The Andy Williams Show, that aired in 1969

WHAT IS PANCREATIC CANCER? 

Pancreatic cancer is one of the most lethal forms of the disease. Around 95 percent of people who contract it die from it. Steve Jobs, Joan Crawford, Patrick Swayze, and Luciano Pavarotti all died of pancreatic cancer. 
It is the fourth-leading killer in the United States. Around 10,000 people are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer each year in the UK, and 50,000 in the US.
WHAT IS THE CAUSE? 
It is caused by the abnormal and uncontrolled growth of cells in the pancreas - a large gland in the digestive system.
WHO HAS THE HIGHEST RISK?
Most cases (90 percent) are in people over the age of 55. Around half of all new cases occur in people aged 75 or older. One in 10 cases are attributed to genetics. Other causes include age, smoking and other health conditions, including diabetes. About 80 percent of pancreatic cancer patients have some form of diabetes. 
WHY IS IT SO LETHAL?
There is no screening method for pancreatic cancer. Pancreatic cancer typically does not show symptoms in the early stages, when it would be more manageable. Sufferers tend to start developing the tell-tale signs - jaundice and abdominal pain - around stage 3 or 4, when it has likely already spread to other organs. 
WHAT ARE THE SURVIVAL RATES? 
For all stages of pancreatic cancer combined, the one-year survival rate is 20 percent. At five years, that rate falls to just nine percent. If the cancer is caught in stage 1A, the five year survival rates is about 14 percent and 12 percent for 1B. 
At stage 2, those rates are seven and five percent, respectively. For a pancreatic cancer in its third stage, only three percent of people will survive another five yaers. By stage IV, the five-year survival rate falls to just one percent.  
WHAT ARE THE TREATMENT OPTIONS? 
The only effective treatment is removal of the pancreas. This proves largely ineffective for those whose cancer has spread to other organs. In those cases, palliative care is advised to ease their pain at the end of their life. 

No comments:

Post a Comment