A Barefoot Fantasia Barrino Sings Soulful Tribute At Aretha Franklin’s Funeral

A Barefoot Fantasia Barrino Sings Soulful Tribute At Aretha Franklin’s Funeral

A Barefoot Fantasia Barrino Sings Soulful Tribute At Aretha Franklin’s Funeral

WILLIAM BARBER: In Aretha, the holiness of the sacred and the secular came together in a way that could only be ordered by the Lord.

As her family members move on from Friday's funeral in Detroit, they're left with the potentially tall task of finding out how many millions she was worth, and divvying it up.

Franklin, 76, died August 16 after a battle with pancreatic cancer.

"I just loved her", he said. "Any time they don't leave a trust or will, there always ends up being a fight".

Among the stunning and powerful performances was her dear friend Stevie Wonder offering comfort with his song. Franklin's father was a prominent minister who organized one of the largest civil rights marches in Detroit.

The epic funeral unfolded on the same day as services for Arizona Sen. John McCain on Saturday. The McCain memorial, with its reverential silence and ramrod-straight honor guard, contrasted sharply with the joyous remembrance in Detroit.

"Aretha will be influencing others literally for centuries to come", said record label boss Clive Davis, who praised her "once-in-a-lifetime voice". (Franklin is being buried in a gold dress.) He also described seeing Franklin perform at Elton John's AIDS Benefit previous year, her final public show. He held the microphone near his iPhone and played a snippet of Franklin's classic "Think", the audience clapping along.

"It's the key to freedom!"

With about three dozen speakers and entertainers slotted in, the program at Greater Grace Temple had been estimated to go five hours, but instead went about eight, ending a few minutes before 7 p.m.

ARETHA FRANKLIN ORCHESTRA: (Singing) Walk in the light. Clarence, Aretha's eldest, is incapacitated and is represented by a guardian. He remembered her turning up at a tribute to him in a tutu. It chronicles Aretha's life from when she was born and how the church on Hastings street, Detroit Michigan became the place where her career started.

Music was in abundance, of course.

Laura Zwicker, an attorney who specializes in estate planning but is not affiliated with the Franklin estate, says she sees it happen all too often in her work.

Singing a Franklin classic in front of the late icon's family and friends was no doubt a daunting task, but Grande handled it with grace, keeping her usual verbal gymnastics in check to deliver a attractive, faithful rendition.

Aretha Franklin was so hard-nosed in her business dealings that she demanded to be paid in cash before performing.

Gladys Knight does not have cancer.

Wonder sang "As" after delivering a speech that emphasized the power of love.

Jennifer Holliday closed the service.

The service also included the reading of condolences from former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, both of whom did not attend.

The Rev. Jesse Jackson, during his address, spoke of being in town for the funeral of civil rights icon Rosa Parks in 2005, and watching as long lines of people formed to pay tribute to her, as they did this week for Franklin. "And there were other people who called us wanting to participate". "And she gave us a regal bar to reach, and that's why we're all here".

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