Celebrities pay tribute to ‘Queen of Soul’ Aretha Franklin

Legendary singer, Aretha Franklin. Net photo

Stars are paying tribute to the Queen of Soul following Aretha Franklin’s death Thursday at the age of 76.

Reports that the beloved singer, 76, was gravely ill surfaced earlier in the week before the news of her passing was confirmed by her family on Thursday morning. A statement released by her loved ones described Franklin as “the matriarch and rock of our family” and went onto say her death was “one of the darkest moments of our lives”.


Fans of the legendary singer shared statements and took to social media to pay their respects to the late Franklin, including many celebrities. See a selection of the tributes below;


Paul McCartney


Let’s all take a moment to give thanks for the beautiful life of Aretha Franklin, the Queen of our souls, who inspired us all for many many years. She will be missed but the memory of her greatness as a musician and a fine human being will live with us forever. Love Paul

Carole King

What a life. What a legacy!

So much love, respect and gratitude.

R.I.P. @ArethaFranklin

Shania Twain

An unbelievable woman and voice. It was an honour to meet and perform with the Queen of Soul. RIP Aretha Franklin

Barack Obama

Aretha helped define the American experience. In her voice, we could feel our history, all of it and in every shade—our power and our pain, our darkness and our light, our quest for redemption and our hard-won respect. May the Queen of Soul rest in eternal peace.

Patti LaBelle

I am deeply saddened about the passing of the Queen of Soul and my sister in song, Aretha Franklin. Today the world has experienced a tremendous loss. Aretha was a rare treasure whose unmatched musical genius helped craft the soundtrack to the lives of so many. My sympathy, love and prayers go out to her family, loved ones and fans around the globe.

John Legend

Salute to the Queen. The greatest vocalist I’ve ever known.

Andy Cohen

There will never be another Queen of Soul.  Aretha Franklin is the embodiment of a soul blessed with a special gift. Grateful we have decades of recordings that will live on. Long Live The Queen. #RIPAretha

Shonda Rhimes


Lin-Manuel Miranda

Lucky enough to have seen Aretha live exactly once, and this was it.

Thank you for the music, we will be listening to you forever.

Barbra Streisand

This photo was taken in 2012 when Aretha & I performed at a tribute celebration for our friend Marvin Hamlisch. It’s difficult to conceive of a world without her. Not only was she a uniquely brilliant singer, but her commitment to civil rights made an indelible impact on the world.

Clive Davis

I’m absolutely devastated by Aretha’s passing.  She was truly one of a kind.  She was more than the Queen of Soul.  She was a national treasure to be cherished by every generation throughout the world.

Ricky Martin

Today we have lost one of the greatest. She will always be remembered and admired. Aretha Franklin, rest in peace. We love you.

Lena Waithe

The world won’t be the same without you in it. You will always have our utmost respect.

Hugh Jackman

One of the highlights of my career was singing with #ArethaFranklin at The Tony Awards. It was an out of body experience for me. One of greatest singers of all time. You will be missed by all.

Idina Menzel

Goodbye Ms. Aretha.  You were my idol. The greatest singer of all time. Every note you sang was pure and authentic and pierced our hearts with joy and pain and life.

Chance the Rapper

The moment I wake up, before I put on my make up, I say a little prayer for you.

Lester Holt

Feeling overwhelmingly sad. Thank you Aretha Franklin for the gift of your voice and your soul. Rest in peace.

Christina Aguilera

Aretha was such a timeless inspiration to me and so many others, the ultimate queen, thank you for the gift of your voice, music and unshakeable soul.

Elton John

The loss of @ArethaFranklin is a blow for everybody who loves real music: Music from the heart, the soul and the Church. Her voice was unique, her piano playing underrated – she was one of my favourite pianists.

Hillary Clinton

Mourning the loss today of @ArethaFranklin who shared her spirit and talent with the world. She deserves not only our RESPECT but also our lasting gratitude for opening our eyes, ears and hearts. Rest in eternal peace, my friend.

Ms. Ross @DianaRoss

I’m sitting in prayer for the wonderful golden spirit Aretha Franklin.

Tony Bennett

It was a double thrill for me to perform on the stage of the Metropolitan Opera on my 85th birthday and have the Queen of Soul (and heart) Aretha Franklin singing with me....she will be missed by the world.

Faith Hill

The choir of angels now have the greatest voice of all time to lead, praise and join in to sing before Jesus. I wanted to share this photo because it shows just how soulful Aretha was without uttering a word.  To say I was humbled to be in her presence would be an understatement.

Tony Goldwyn

RIP @ArethaFranklin. What a colossal loss. Thanks for the joy and inspiration you gave to the world. #TheQueenofSoul #genius



Subscribe to The New Times E-Paper

You want to chat directly with us? Send us a message on WhatsApp at +250 788 310 999    


Follow The New Times on Google News