11 Songs, 32 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

After Aretha Franklin left Columbia Records and recorded this 1967 classic for the smaller Atlantic Records, she altered the course of music. She also found her place atop the soul-R&B pantheon and in the hearts of millions of listeners. But it wasn’t just that barrel-chested voice of hers—and its ability to soothe and caress—that did it. Nor was it the way she strutted through songs with hip-swinging sassafras and unspoken sexuality; she was born with that stuff. This album made her huge because A) the timing for it was perfect, and B) she teamed up with producer Jerry Wexler. Wexler (and engineer Tom Dowd) got Aretha transmitting from deep within her personal history, which included her Detroit childhood and singing gospel in churches and touring the Jim Crow South with her famous minister pop, Rev. C.L. Franklin. From her own confessional “Baby, Baby, Baby” to Otis Redding’s “Respect” to Chip/Morman’s “Do Right Woman, Do Right Man” to Sam Cooke’s prayer-like “A Change Is Gonna Come” to the aching title song, you can tell Franklin is singing from the depths of her being.

EDITORS’ NOTES

After Aretha Franklin left Columbia Records and recorded this 1967 classic for the smaller Atlantic Records, she altered the course of music. She also found her place atop the soul-R&B pantheon and in the hearts of millions of listeners. But it wasn’t just that barrel-chested voice of hers—and its ability to soothe and caress—that did it. Nor was it the way she strutted through songs with hip-swinging sassafras and unspoken sexuality; she was born with that stuff. This album made her huge because A) the timing for it was perfect, and B) she teamed up with producer Jerry Wexler. Wexler (and engineer Tom Dowd) got Aretha transmitting from deep within her personal history, which included her Detroit childhood and singing gospel in churches and touring the Jim Crow South with her famous minister pop, Rev. C.L. Franklin. From her own confessional “Baby, Baby, Baby” to Otis Redding’s “Respect” to Chip/Morman’s “Do Right Woman, Do Right Man” to Sam Cooke’s prayer-like “A Change Is Gonna Come” to the aching title song, you can tell Franklin is singing from the depths of her being.

TITLE TIME

Ratings and Reviews

4.8 out of 5
13 Ratings
13 Ratings
lord of host

Excellence

An Icon and symbol of the real Black America doing the 1960s and the sound is as good today as it was back then great collector I love it

gravconstudio

Muscle Shoals

The Queen of Soul might not have been as great without the help of Rick Hall. Aretha went to Alabama to record at FAME studios. She came in a Diva with a cigarette in her hand looking at Roger Hawkins on drums, Berry Beckett on keyboards, David Hood on bass, and Spooner Oldham on organ. All of them were white, older men who look like they worked at a grocery store. Aretha came in and was warming up and trying to work on a rift on piano. It was awful. The band could not find rhythm. So they stopped. You had the Queen of Soul in the studio, and you could here crickets. Then Spooner started riff. The band started playing and Aretha started to belt out “I Never Loved A Man (The Way I Love You)”. in 15 minutes, she had started a movement in her career. She brought the “The Swampers” with here to NY to finish the album. The Swampers are a name you will find more times than not in great music :)

About Aretha Franklin

With her inimitable fusion of grace and grit, Aretha Franklin is the definition of soul music. The daughter of renowned Detroit preacher C.L. Franklin, Aretha can testify with all the liberating joy of her gospel roots. She can ache with the sadness of a singer who truly felt the blues, and swing with a playfulness to match her jazz heroes. After nearly a decade honing what would become her singular voice, Franklin, who was born in Memphis, Tennessee in 1942, brought a blast of black-and-proud empowerment to the pop charts at the peak of the civil rights era, using the hard-driving grooves of Alabama studio-session legends the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section to counter Motown’s slick crossover sound. Though rarely straying long from gospel in the decades that followed, Franklin made the brassy 1967 anthem “Respect” her calling card and evolved alongside soul itself, gliding from assertive funk jams to hushed quiet-storm ballads to synth-coated pop hits on 1985's Who’s Zoomin’ Who?. Whether her devastating version of Simon & Garfunkel's “Bridge Over Troubled Water” or her volcanic interpretation of Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep,” nothing captures Franklin’s range like her trove of covers, which are often so deeply felt that she has all but reclaimed them as her own.

HOMETOWN
Memphis, TN
BORN
March 25, 1942

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