Aretha: Lady Soul
I always felt rock and roll was very, very wholesome music. Aretha Franklin
Aretha Louise Franklin (born March 25, 1942) is an American singer and musician. Franklin began her career singing gospel at her father, minister C. L. Franklin’s church as a child.
Let’s start with the church. As you know, it’s my background, it’s a natural setting for me and it’s definitely my roots. Aretha Franklin
After turning 18, Aretha confided to her father that she aspired to follow Sam Cooke to record pop music. Serving as her manager, C. L. agreed to the move and helped to produce a two-song demo that soon was brought to the attention of Columbia Records, who agreed to sign her in 1960. Franklin was signed as a “five-percent artist”. During this period, Franklin would be coached by choreographer Cholly Atkins to prepare for her pop performances.
Before signing with Columbia, Sam Cooke tried to persuade Aretha’s father to have his label, RCA sign Aretha. He had also been persuaded by local record label owner Berry Gordy to sign Aretha and her elder sister Erma to his Tamla label. Aretha’s father felt the label wasn’t established enough yet. Aretha’s first Columbia single, “Today I Sing the Blues“, was issued in September 1960 and later reached the top ten of the Hot Rhythm & Blues Sellers chart.
And I was booked once to go on ‘Ed Sullivan’ and I got bumped and ran out the back door crying. Aretha Franklin
In 1960, at age 18, Franklin embarked on a secular career, recording for Columbia Records only achieving modest success.
In January 1961, Columbia issued Aretha’s debut album, Aretha: With The Ray Bryant Combo. The album featured her first single to chart the Billboard Hot 100, “Won’t Be Long”, which also peaked at number 7 on the R&B chart.
Mostly produced by Clyde Otis, Franklin’s Columbia recordings saw her recording in diverse genres such as standards, vocal jazz, blues, doo-wop and rhythm and blues. Before the year was out, Franklin scored her first top 40 single with her rendition of the standard, “Rock-a-Bye Your Baby with a Dixie Melody“, which also included the R&B hit, “Operation Heartbreak”, on its b-side. “Rock-a-Bye” became her first international hit, reaching the top 40 in Australia and Canada. By the end of 1961, Franklin was named as a “new-star female vocalist” in Down Beat magazine.
In 1962, Columbia issued two more albums, The Electrifying Aretha Franklin and The Tender, the Moving, the Swinging Aretha Franklin, the latter of which charted number 69 on the Billboard Pop LPs chart.
Following her signing to Atlantic Records in 1967, Franklin achieved commercial acclaim and success with songs such as “Respect”, “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” and “Think”. These hits and more helped her to gain the title The Queen of Soul by the end of the 1960s decade.
I’ve never recorded anything I didn’t like. Aretha Franklin
Franklin eventually recorded a total of 88 charted singles on Billboard, including 77 Hot 100 entries and twenty number-one R&B singles, becoming the most charted female artist in the chart’s history.
Franklin also recorded acclaimed albums such as I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You, Lady Soul, Young, Gifted & Black and Amazing Grace before experiencing problems with her record company by the mid-1970s. After her father was shot in 1979, Franklin left Atlantic and signed with Arista Records, finding success with a cameo appearance in the film, The Blues Brothers and with the albums, Jump to It and Who’s Zoomin’ Who?.
“Being a singer is a natural gift. It means I’m using to the highest degree possible the gift that God gave me to use. I’m happy with that”. Aretha Franklin
(Ooo) What you want
(Ooo) Baby, I got it
(Ooo) What you need
(Ooo) do you know I got it
(Ooo) All I’m askin’
(Ooo) Is for a little respect when you get home (just a little bit)
Hey baby (just a little bit) when you get home
(just a little bit) mister (just a little bit)
I ain’t gonna do you wrong while you’re gone
Ain’t gonna do you wrong (ooo) ‘cause I don’t wanna (ooo)
All I’m askin’ (ooo)
Is for a little respect when you come home (just a little bit)
Baby (just a little bit) when you get home (just a little bit)
Yeah (just a little bit)
I’m about to give you all of my money
And all I’m askin’ in return, honey
Is to give me my propers
When you get home (just a, just a, just a, just a)
Yeah baby (just a, just a, just a, just a)
When you get home (just a little bit)
Yeah (just a little bit)
Ooo, your kisses (ooo)
Sweeter than honey (ooo)
And guess what? (ooo)
So is my money (ooo)
All I want you to do (ooo) for me
Is give it to me when you get home (re, re, re, re)
Yeah baby (re, re, re, re)
Whip it to me (respect, just a little bit)
When you get home, now (just a little bit)
Find out what it means to me
Take care… T-C-B*
Oh (sock it to me, sock it to me,
sock it to me, sock it to me)
A little respect (sock it to me, sock it to me,
sock it to me, sock it to me)
Whoa, yeah (just a little bit)
A little respect (just a little bit)
I get tired (just a little bit)
I keep on tryin’ (just a little bit)
You’re runnin’ out of fools (just a little bit)
And I ain’t lyin’ (just a little bit)
(re, re, re, re) Repect when you come home
(re, re, re, re)
Or you just might walk in (respect, just a little bit)
And find out I’m gone (just a little bit)
Songwriter(s): James Smith, Mack Rice, Larry Henley, Kimberly Jones, Luther Thomas Ingram, Jeff Silbar, Howard A. Thompson
In 1998, Franklin won international acclaim for singing the opera aria, “Nessun Dorma”, at the Grammys of that year replacing Luciano Pavarotti. Later that same year, she scored her final Top 40 recording with “A Rose Is Still a Rose”.