Faith Hill, and her dynamite vocals, paid tribute to Aretha Franklin as the first of several performers at the Queen of Soul’s funeral.
No matter the genre of music, Aretha Franklin was an inspiration for so many artists throughout her career. Faith Hill and her husband, Tim McGraw, frequently opened their Soul2Soul Tour with Aretha’s “I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me),” and the stunning impact Aretha has had on Faith, in particular, is not unnoticed. The country star was the first musical act of the day at Aretha’s six and a half hours-long celebration of life. Faith had the crowd on their feet with an upbeat rendition of the hymn “What A Friend We Have In Jesus,” backed by the Aretha Franklin Celebration Choir.
Aretha died on Aug. 16 at the age of 76 after her fight against pancreatic cancer. Faith took to social media to remember the Queen of Soul and her lasting impact on the superstar country singer’s career. “The choir of angels now have the greatest voice of all time to lead, praise and join in to sing before Jesus. I wanted to share this photo because it shows just how soulful Aretha was without uttering a word,” Faith wrote with a photo of Aretha reaching toward the camera, with Faith smiling next to her. “To say I was humbled to be in her presence would be an understatement.” In addition to covering Aretha’s duet with George Michael from her Aretha album, Faith would cover her song, “Dr. Feelgood (Love Is a Serious Business)” during her residency at The Venetian in Las Vegas from 2012-2013.
Joining Faith as a performer today at Aretha’s star-studded funeral, is Ariana Grande, Jennifer Hudson, Stevie Wonder, Chaka Khan and Fantasia Barrino-Taylor. Former President Bill Clinton, Clive Davis, Smokey Robinson, former NBA player Isaiah Thomas, Tyler Perry and Cicley Tyson join a slew of expected speakers throughout the day. For the Queen of Soul, nothing is too much, and we’re honored to celebrate her life and legacy she has left behind.
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