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Aretha Franklin dies at 76

Aretha Franklin dies at 76.
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Wikipedia

The Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, has died at the age of 76 in Detroit. 

The news comes after her family asked for prayers this week disclosing that she was "gravely ill." 

The singer died at her home in Detroit on Thursday according to her publicist and the Associated Press. 

Born Aretha Louise Franklin, she hailed from Memphis Tennessee.

Franklin's career spans over six decades, beginning with her gospel roots in Memphis, Tennessee. 

It wasn't until the early 60s that the singer started on the road to commercial success, later in the decade shooting to number one with her re-imagining of Otis Redding's ballad "Respect." Ths song becoming an anthem for not only women but the Civil Rights Movement of the times. 

“I don’t think it’s bold at all. I think it’s quite natural that we all want respect — and should get it," she said of the song on its 50 year anniversary. 

In the 80's Franklin reclaimed her position on the music charts with a few hits including "Freeway of Love" and "I Knew You Were Waiting," a duet with the late George Michael in 1986. 

Shortly after that hit, she became the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. 

She performed at presidential inaugurations including those for Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama. 

Jennifer Hudson is scheduled to play Franklin in a biopic headed to theaters in 2019.