I was about ten when I got my first cassette player for Christmas and with it 3 pre-recorded cassettes. One of those cassettes was Aretha Franklin’s “I Never Loved A Man the Way I Love You”. I’m not sure who made the decision to get those titles but my musical worldview was forever changed as a result. Many people will have something to say about Aretha Franklin, I am adding commentary as a way of paying RESPECT to an artist who never failed to inspire and impress. Who succeeded in re-creating herself more than once and who did so over the course of a 50-year career.
When she performed a song, she owned it and when others attempted to perform those same songs, the effort was futile. She created her own page in the American songbook at a time when soul music was emerging and gaining popularity. Her genius was the decisive factor.