American Legends : The Life of Aretha Franklin
*Includes pictures *Includes Aretha's quotes *Includes a bibliography for further reading *Includes a table of contents "Being the Queen is not all about singing, and being a diva is not all about singing. It has much to do with your service to people. And your social contributions to your community and your civic contributions as well." - Aretha Franklin A lot of ink has been spilled covering the lives of history's most influential figures, but how much of the forest is lost for the trees? In Charles River Editors' American Legends series, readers can get caught up to speed on the lives of America's most important men and women in the time it takes to finish a commute, while learning interesting facts long forgotten or never known. A certain inevitability characterizes the rise to fame of Aretha Franklin. Indeed, while it is true that neither of her parents were pop singers, they were each talented vocalists-Aretha's father, C.L., was a particularly famous preacher, with a voice so melodic that his sermons effectively doubled as musical performances. Moreover, in an age in which economic opportunities were particularly limited for African-Americans, Aretha was fortunate enough to grow up in a household of relative comfort. Not only was she exposed to music on a daily basis in her household, but her father was a savvy enough businessman to orchestrate her career during its nascent stages, helping her navigate the challenges of entering the music industry. To be certain, in many respects, Aretha Franklin was from an early age the beneficiary of opportunities that are simply unavailable to most aspiring vocalists. At the same time, it is also clear that in quite obvious ways, Aretha Franklin diverted from her parents and, indeed, important aspects of her racial and cultural heritage. Where her father's musical performances were directly related to his faith, Aretha was a pop singer rather than a gospel one. Her musical style was heavily influenced by the musical traditions of gospel, but she also incorporated aspects of rock and other more popular idioms, an important decision that granted her a far wider audience than she could otherwise have hoped to acquire. As much as Franklin's family upbringing prepared her for a career as a vocalist, her decision to break away from the musical tradition that defined her youth also positions her as something of a maverick. Further, while she certainly enjoyed a far greater audience than her father, this also carried its own challenges in a tumultuous era that saw first the Civil Rights Movement and then Second Wave Feminism. More than just someone who was prepared for success from an early age, Aretha Franklin became very much her own person, a socially- and politically-committed individual invested in promoting social change. American Legends: The Life of Aretha Franklin looks at the life and career of one of America's most influential musicians. Along with pictures of important people, places, and events, you will learn about Aretha Franklin like never before, in no time at all.
- Paperback | 44 pages
- 148.6 x 214.1 x 18.5mm | 358.34g
- 22 Feb 2015
- United States
- black & white illustrations