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Sunday, September 28, 2014
Aretha Franklin’s ‘Great Diva Classics’ Due
Aretha Franklin is showing some R-E-S-P-E-C-T to her fellow divas: The Queen of Soul will release an album Oct. 21 covering classic songs from other female singers.
Aretha Franklin Sings the Great Diva Classics will include songs such as Gladys Knight's "Midnight Train to Georgia," Barbra Streisand's "People" and Whitney Houston's "I'm Every Woman."
The most contemporary track is a reworking of Adele's colossal hit "Rolling In the Deep," which is the first single off the album. It will be available digitally Monday, when the 72-year-old will also perform the song on Late Night with David Letterman.
"Great Diva Classics" reunites Franklin with longtime collaborator Clive Davis.
"I mean, it is great," he said in an interview. "For her to do all these songs, it's very exciting."
Exclusive: Clive Davis Says Aretha Franklin Is 'On Fire' on New Album of Diva Classics
Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds and Andre 3000 are among the album's producers. Other songs covered by Franklin include the Supremes' "You Keep Me Hangin' On," Alicia Keys' "No One" and Dinah Washington's "Teach Me Tonight." The icon's version of Gloria Gaynor's "I Will Survive" will incorporate some of Destiny's Child's "Survivor."
The opening track is Etta James' signature song, "At Last," and Franklin closes the 10-track set with Sinead O'Connor's "Nothing Compares 2 U."
Speaking to Billboard ahead of the release, Davis said he was thrilled with the album. "She's on fire and vocally in absolutely peak form," he explained. "What a thrill to see this peerless artist still showing the way, still sending shivers up your spine, still demonstrating that all contemporary music needs right now is the voice. What a voice." The new recording, he added, "is purely and simply sensational."