There is so much you could say about Aretha Franklin, but it all comes down to the voice. When so many singers aim for soul but end up trilling up and down the musical scales in search of the right note, packing 96 syllables into every word when only two are needed (called ‘melisma’, apparently) it becomes even more obvious that Aretha really was the Queen of Soul. She mastered and controlled her voice; it was a precise tool technically and emotionally. For God’s sake,  this is the woman who made The Beatles palatable!

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