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Aretha Franklin

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ENTERTAINMENT
June 26, 1993 | By Tom Moon, INQUIRER MUSIC CRITIC
When veteran performers such as Aretha Franklin appear in concert, at least part of their mission is to convince longtime fans that they still have that special magic, whatever power brought them success the first time around. Franklin dispensed with that formality in the first five minutes of her sold-out performance last night at Valley Forge Music Fair. Opening with "River Deep, Mountain High," she sang each phrase as though trying to sell the song for the first time. She was determined to make its message stick: As her ad libs built from a brooding blue whimper into a formidable wail, Franklin meted out bitterness in microtones.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 31, 2014 | By A.D. Amorosi, FOR THE INQUIRER
No one needed to remind the audience at the Kimmel Center on Monday that Aretha Franklin, 72, is the reigning Queen of Soul - not the T-shirt vendors or the announcer by the side of the stage. From the first notes of Jackie Wilson's upbeat "(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher" to the night's playful finale, Franklin's voice showed subtlety, grace, and strength - hallmarks of her continued majesty. Aficionados who have witnessed erratic performances and late starts were pleased that Franklin hit the stage minutes after 8 p.m., ready to sing.
NEWS
April 3, 1998 | by Tonya Pendleton, Daily News Staff Writer
Truthfully, the thought of hip-hop maestro Sean "Puffy" Combs producing a track for soul legend Aretha Franklin was laughable at best, pitiful at worst. But amazingly enough, on her new album, "A Rose Is Still a Rose," Combs' song is one of the many highlights. Franklin has said that her already powerful voice has more clarity than ever before since she gave up smoking. That's certainly apparent in her joyous vocal runs and scatted melodies. It sounds as though Franklin enjoyed collaborating with her youthful producers and that comes through in her performances.
NEWS
October 2, 2015 | By Julia Terruso, Inquirer Staff Writer
Aretha Franklin released a statement Wednesday saying she had a lovely interaction with Pope Francis on Saturday and did not realize he was sitting behind her when she performed at the Festival of Families later that evening. Franklin took her fair share of heat on social media for failing to greet the pontiff after she took the stage to perform "Amazing Grace. " All of the other performers - including emcee Mark Wahlberg and classical singer Andrea Bocelli - greeted the pope before or after singing, and he presented each with a small gift.
NEWS
July 4, 1992 | By Sam Wood, SPECIAL TO THE INQUIRER
The Queen of Soul has never had a classier backup band. Last night at the Mann Music Center, Aretha Franklin and the Philadelphia Orchestra took the chill out of a frigid July night. The concert, preceded by a heavy downpour, was the kickoff of the three-day Fourth of July Freedom Festival. Franklin was in fiery form. Dressed in an orange-red cloak with enough billowy ruffles to outfit a ballroom with curtains, Franklin swooped her way through a half-hour of her greatest hits with plenty of spine-tingling bravura.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 18, 2014 | By Sam Adams, For The Inquirer
American Idol and its ilk have taught us to regard a singer's voice the way progressive-rock fans once cooed over instrumental solos. But what made Aretha Franklin, who performed at Revel Ovation Hall in Atlantic City on Saturday night, an epoch-defining figure was not simply talent or even technique, but judgment - not the notes she could hit but when she chose to hit them. Before she was the Queen of Soul - an honorific that also serves as the title of Rhino Records' nicely remastered recent collection - Franklin spent the better part of the 1960s letting producers pair her with overorchestrated jazz and pop standards, with results equivalent to a Van Gogh painted on black velvet.
NEWS
September 7, 2012 | By Tirdad Derakhshani, Inquirer Staff Writer
Aretha Franklin 's biopic is on. Repeat: It's a go. Franklin, 70, has approved the story treatment for what her PR rep calls "an epic tale with probably the most starring and supporting roles since Roots . " And she has started casting. Already cast: Dorothy Norwood , Karen Clark , and La Shun Pace as Franklin's friend (and sometimes backing vocalist), Philly's Clara Ward , and her group, the Clara Ward Singers. So who'll play the Queen of Soul? Franklin says she has a wish list for the supporting cast: Audra McDonald , Nia Long , Kerry Washington , and Blair Underwood . And who'll play Her Soulfulness?
NEWS
December 14, 2012
ARETHA Franklin and her famous pipes have always demanded R-E-S-P-E-C-T. Friday night, visitors to Chestnut Hill's Woodmere Art Museum have the chance to experience the Queen of Soul's classics through the powerful vocals of Lisa Chavous. The museum's Friday Night Jazz program is dedicating an entire evening to "Ree-Ree," featuring such songs as "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman," "Dr. Feelgood" and "Rock Steady. " Backing Chavous is the Arpeggio Jazz Ensemble, which has been preforming at the Friday Woodmere sessions for more than two years under band bassist Warren Oree.
NEWS
September 14, 2012
NEW YORK - The Juilliard School plans a star-filled private musical tribute to Marvin Hamlisch that will include Barbra Streisand, Aretha Franklin and Liza Minnelli. The composer, who became the youngest person accepted by Juilliard at age 7, died Aug. 6 in Los Angeles. The memorial will be held Tuesday night at the school. Hamlisch composed or arranged hundreds of scores for musicals and movies, including "A Chorus Line" on Broadway and the films "The Sting," "Sophie's Choice" and "The Way We Were.
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NEWS
June 24, 2016 | By Shaun Brady, For Inquirer
Sure, summer blockbusters offer a few hours' respite to give your brain a vacation and escape into the air-conditioned comfort of your local multiplex. But three months is a long time to subsist on a visual diet of nothing more than caped crime-fighters, wisecracking animals, gunshots, explosions, and tire squeals. A number of local film series provide an offbeat alternative, celebrating the independent and the outrageous on a regular basis. Philadelphia Unnamed Film Festival (PUFF)
NEWS
October 2, 2015 | By Julia Terruso, Inquirer Staff Writer
Aretha Franklin released a statement Wednesday saying she had a lovely interaction with Pope Francis on Saturday and did not realize he was sitting behind her when she performed at the Festival of Families later that evening. Franklin took her fair share of heat on social media for failing to greet the pontiff after she took the stage to perform "Amazing Grace. " All of the other performers - including emcee Mark Wahlberg and classical singer Andrea Bocelli - greeted the pope before or after singing, and he presented each with a small gift.
NEWS
September 25, 2015 | By Julia Terruso, Inquirer Staff Writer
She's performed for presidents, the Queen of England, and Pope John Paul II. On Saturday, Aretha Franklin will headline the Festival of Families concert attended by Pope Francis on his historic visit to Philadelphia. The Queen of Soul talked with The Inquirer on Tuesday about what the event means to the star, a seasoned pro and lifelong Baptist; whom she's bringing with her; and the very special gift she hopes to give the pontiff. Did you reach out to volunteer for this or were you contacted?
NEWS
September 25, 2015 | By Jenny DeHuff
COLOMBIAN rock artist, Juanes , born and raised Catholic in Colombia, said he received an invitation from the Vatican to perform at tomorrow's Festival of Families roughly three months ago. He couldn't say no. The Grammy-winning soloist will headline a performance for Pope Francis on the Ben Franklin Parkway, along with Andrea Bocelli , Aretha Franklin and the Fray (see interview with Aretha, Page 43). He'll have the backup of the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Pennsylvania Girlchoir and Keystone State Boychoir, too. Juanes, 43, said that his religious upbringing has been very important to him, and he was "in shock" when he was first contacted about the concert.
NEWS
September 16, 2015 | BY REGINA MEDINA, Daily News Staff Writer medinar@phillynews.com, 215-854-5985
THE PUBLIC MAY KNOW him as a Calvin Klein underwear model or Ted's bestie in the raunchy comedy "Ted" or the fellow who is trying to expunge his past criminal record, but the devoutly Catholic Mark "Marky Mark" Wahlberg is a man of faith in real life. World Meeting of Families organizers indeed announced yesterday that the actor-producer-restaurateur will emcee the Festival of Families lineup Sept. 26 on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. "As a Catholic, I credit much of my success to my faith," Wahlberg said in a statement.
NEWS
September 16, 2015 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
Mark Wahlberg, erstwhile rapper and underwear model whose sometimes-crude humor earned him starring roles in two comedies about a grown man and his sentient teddy bear, seems like an odd fit to host a festival for the pope. But the 44-year-old actor has long credited his Boston parish priest with guidance that helped him overcome a childhood of crime and drug use. And, after all, this pope is a progressive one. So, Marky Mark: Meet Pope Francis. Wahlberg will anchor the Saturday, Sept.
NEWS
September 15, 2015 | By Julia Terruso, Inquirer Staff Writer
Aretha Franklin is slated to join the lineup of artists performing for Pope Francis at the Festival of Families Saturday, Sept. 26. The Queen of Soul will join tenor Andrea Bocelli, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and Latin pop star Juanes, who was announced in June, according to sources with knowledge of the event planning. The festival will be broadcast on TV and shown on 40 Jumbotron screens throughout the city. Free tickets nearest the stage were all reserved last week but the portion of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway from 20th Street east is unticketed and open to all. Pope Francis is expected to attend and speak at the Festival of Families.
SPORTS
May 16, 2015 | By Dan DeLuca, Inquirer Staff Writer
Can music save Atlantic City? With four casinos shut down last year, live music receives a big summer job: Bring bodies - and dollars - back to the beleaguered resort. The Borgata opens an outdoor venue that holds 5,000, and there's a beefed-up series of big-name shows at Boardwalk Hall (including those highlighted below), plus the Eagles on July 17 and Puerto Rican pop singer Chayanne on Aug. 20. There will once again be two giant free concerts spread over one long weekend this summer, modeled after the Blake Shelton and Lady Antebellum experience of last summer, though dates and headliners are yet unknown.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 1, 2015 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
No one needed to remind the audience at the Kimmel Center on Monday that Aretha Franklin, 72, is the reigning Queen of Soul - not the T-shirt vendors or the announcer by the side of the stage. From the first notes of Jackie Wilson's upbeat "(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher" to the night's playful finale, Franklin's voice showed subtlety, grace, and strength - hallmarks of her continued majesty. Aficionados who have witnessed erratic performances and late starts were pleased that Franklin hit the stage minutes after 8 p.m., ready to sing.
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