Norma Coates, associate professor in Western University’s Don Wright Faculty of Music, is available today to discuss the legacy of singer Aretha Franklin, who died at the age of 76.
“There can be no argument that Aretha Franklin was the great singer of the postwar era, and perhaps since the beginning of recording sound at the end of the 19thcentury,” said Coates, who specializes in the history of popular music. “Steeped and rooted in the gospel music of her youth and upbringing, Franklin had the unique ability to sing anything, from anthems to lullabies, and make them uniquely her own. Her versatility and range transcended the divisions of musical genre and as much as it is possible, the ravages of racism, while remaining rooted in the gospel and African American experience. Her’s was a towering talent that will resound eternally.”
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