April 1, 2016 1:07 PM Subscribe
"[I]f I’m stranded on a desert island, and have ten records to take, I know [Aretha Franklin is] in the collection. For she’ll remind me of my humanity. What’s essential in all of us. And she just sounds so damn good," writes President Obama. "Here’s a tip: when you’re deejaying a party, open with ‘Rock Steady.’ " David Remnick profiles Aretha Franklin for The New Yorker: "Soul Survivor."
“I don’t care what they say about Aretha,” Billy Preston, who died in 2006, once said. “She can be hiding out in her house in Detroit for years. She can go decades without taking a plane or flying off to Europe. She can cancel half her gigs and infuriate every producer and promoter in the country. She can sing all kinds of jive-ass songs that are beneath her. She can go into her diva act and turn off the world. But on any given night, when that lady sits down at the piano and gets her body and soul all over some righteous song, she’ll scare the shit out of you. And you’ll know—you’ll swear—that she’s still the best fuckin’ singer this fucked-up country has ever produced.”Soundtrack: "Bridge Over Troubled Water," "Natural Woman - Kennedy Center Honors 2015," "Rock Steady."
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