Aretha Franklin

Soul Queen

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AllMusic Review by

Aretha Franklin has simply been one of the greatest singers of the modern generation, and whether bringing her powerful, passionate voice to bear on gospel standards, songs from the Great American Songbook, jazz standards, pop ditties, or deep Southern soul and R&B, she has always had the presence -- much like Ray Charles -- to make anything she touches unmistakably hers. Franklin began her career in gospel when she was still a teenager, and her amazing vocal talents, coupled with her fine piano playing, marked her as a once-in-a-lifetime kind of artist, qualities very apparent to legendary talent scout John Hammond, who signed her to Columbia Records. The problem Hammond and Columbia immediately ran into, though, was how to best present that spirited voice to the secular pop world. Columbia tried Franklin in a variety of styles and settings, but none of them exactly caught fire with the public -- that didn't happen until after the singer had moved on to Atlantic Records and an inspired pairing with producer Jerry Wexler, who brought out Franklin's deep soul roots by putting her in front of the Muscle Shoals Sound Rhythm Section. The hits came pouring out, including "Chain of Fools," "Respect," "Spanish Harlem," and several other iconic classics, all of which are featured in this 60-track playlist drawn from Franklin's productive stay at Atlantic. Heard together like this, they form the heart and soul of her impressive legacy.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 02:51 Amazon
2 03:18 SpotifyAmazon
3 02:19 SpotifyAmazon
4 04:08 SpotifyAmazon
5 02:54 SpotifyAmazon
6 02:28 SpotifyAmazon
7 02:08 SpotifyAmazon
8 03:23 Amazon
9 02:47 SpotifyAmazon
10 02:54 SpotifyAmazon
11 03:42
12 02:44 SpotifyAmazon
13 02:49 SpotifyAmazon
14 02:38 Amazon
15 02:26 SpotifyAmazon
16 03:59 SpotifyAmazon
17 02:19 SpotifyAmazon
18 02:25 SpotifyAmazon
19 04:11 SpotifyAmazon
20 03:30 SpotifyAmazon
21 03:16 SpotifyAmazon
22 02:28 SpotifyAmazon
23 02:43 SpotifyAmazon
24 02:22 SpotifyAmazon
25 03:37 SpotifyAmazon
26 04:50 SpotifyAmazon
27 02:57 SpotifyAmazon
28 02:30 SpotifyAmazon
29 03:02 SpotifyAmazon
30 03:06 SpotifyAmazon
31 04:22 SpotifyAmazon
32 03:21 SpotifyAmazon
33 02:58 SpotifyAmazon
34 02:43 SpotifyAmazon
35 03:38 SpotifyAmazon
36 02:38 SpotifyAmazon
37 03:57 SpotifyAmazon
38 04:42 SpotifyAmazon
39 03:31 SpotifyAmazon
40 03:34 SpotifyAmazon
41 04:04 SpotifyAmazon
42 03:02 Amazon
43 05:34 SpotifyAmazon
44 03:21 Amazon
45 04:26 SpotifyAmazon
46 03:42 Amazon
47 03:36 SpotifyAmazon
48 03:34 SpotifyAmazon
49 03:14 SpotifyAmazon
50 04:00 SpotifyAmazon
51 03:53 SpotifyAmazon
52 03:38 SpotifyAmazon
53 05:30 SpotifyAmazon
54 04:26 SpotifyAmazon
55 03:25 Amazon
56 02:51 SpotifyAmazon
57 03:50 SpotifyAmazon
58 02:37 SpotifyAmazon
59 03:28 Amazon
60 06:22 SpotifyAmazon
blue highlight denotes track pick