On Air Now
Playing a little golf, too. And he checked on the grape harvest in the pre-fire Napa Valley for his eponymous wine company. But during the pandemic, Motown legend Smokey Robinson is performing only one concert — Saturday in a virtual gala for the PACER Center , the Bloomington, Minnesota-based nonprofit that works with children with disabilities and combats bullying.
Some Bands & Artists We’ve Performed With:
Is Mariah Carey actually a good singer? She shifts effortlessly from her very bright head voice to a mid-range belt, and has a great knack for putting her head voice moments right next to her low mezzo sections. Ah, the Xtina growl. But her voice is also heavily influenced by the old-school sounds of vintage jazz, soul and blues, with Aguilera herself citing her vocal inspirations as Billie Holiday, Aretha Franklin and Nina Simone. You know who else transcends genres? At first, she keeps it simple: sitting on a stool, draped in a '50s-style ball gown with the spotlight directly on her.
Family and friends including Martha Reeves and Bettye Lavette celebrate the life of a cruelly overlooked artist. Diminutive and tomboyish in appearance, Carolyn is clearly in control of the session: she anchors the beat with a church clap, teaching her sister the melody while Aretha holds down chords on the piano. For the woman who ferociously demanded respect, Aretha appears meek, almost sheepish. Yet it was Aretha who would go on to become the Queen of Soul , and whose story will be depicted this year in the biopic Respect, while Carolyn has been mostly overlooked, known — if at all — for a few songwriting credits. Her life and career as a songwriter, backing vocalist and solo artist, though cut short, is one of frustrated opportunity, hidden identity and fantastic accomplishment. Born in Memphis in , Carolyn Ann Franklin was the fourth and last child of Barbara and the Rev Clarence LaVaughan CL Franklin, who — revered for his fusion of religious fervour with civil rights rhetoric — was invited to lead the congregation of the New Bethel Baptist church in Detroit after a spell in Buffalo. Barbara died of a heart attack in ; Carolyn, her sisters, Erma and Aretha, and her brother, Cecil, were raised primarily by their father. But the Franklin children were exposed to other permutations of Black music in the home: gospel, jazz, and blues musicians, including Clara Ward, Dinah Washington and BB King, gathered at the Franklin mansion at La Salle Boulevard. Carolyn even created a girl group in elementary school and invited a future Supreme to audition. When I found out that she was actually writing some of the songs for Aretha, I was so impressed.