On Aug. 16, news broke that legendary musician Aretha Franklin passed away at age 76 after a long battle with cancer. The news came after reports that the singer had fallen “gravely ill” and was with friends and family at a Detroit hospital earlier this week. Aretha’s failing health and passing away prompted fellow musicians and celebrity admirers to pay tribute to the icon.
Lenny Kravitz, who has always been a fan of Aretha’s, posted a heartfelt message on Twitter. “The Queen of Soul has left this earth to sit on her throne in heaven. How blessed we were to hear the best that God had to offer in her voice. RESPECT,” he wrote. Shonda Rhimes, Elton John, John Legend, and more stars also took to social media to pay their respects. Keep reading to see their kind words.
— Chaka Khan (@ChakaKhan) August 14, 2018
Salute to the Queen. The greatest vocalist I’ve ever known. 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽 #Aretha
— John Legend (@johnlegend) August 16, 2018
Queen… My Queen. pic.twitter.com/6olvvLPISd
— Anita Baker (@IAMANITABAKER) August 16, 2018
We mourn the passing of Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul. Her voice will keep lifting us, through the music she gave the world. Our thoughts are with her family, her loved ones and fans everywhere. Take her hand, precious Lord, and lead her home. 🎶 pic.twitter.com/I84HTEVZU1
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) August 16, 2018
The world has lost one of the greatest voices of our time, the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin. She is a legend who will never be forgotten. We are sending prayers and all of our love to her family and friends. 💜 pic.twitter.com/uBtXgO1LId
— The Real (@TheRealDaytime) August 16, 2018
Mourning the loss today of @ArethaFranklin who shared her spirit and talent with the world. She deserves not only our RESPECT but also our lasting gratitude for opening our eyes, ears and hearts. Rest in eternal peace, my friend.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) August 16, 2018
Rest in peace on your throne Queen Aretha Franklin.
— Tevin Campbell (@tevincampbelll) August 16, 2018
My all-time favorite Aretha Franklin song. A gifted singer and musician. May she forever rest. https://t.co/dCsz9MwZs4
— Uzo Aduba (@UzoAduba) August 16, 2018
— BeBe Zahara Benet (@BeBeZaharaBenet) August 16, 2018
An unbelievable woman and voice. It was an honor to meet and perform with the Queen of Soul. RIP Aretha Franklin ❤️💔https://t.co/BQBtdPuoZO
— Shania Twain (@ShaniaTwain) August 16, 2018
Deeply saddened by the passing of a beloved friend and queen/warrior Aretha Franklin. Her contributions are legendary both personally and societally. We hope you take a pause today to remember the life of a beautiful soul. pic.twitter.com/ce4ht2g0ha
— Reverend Al Sharpton (@TheRevAl) August 16, 2018
Remember when she stepped in last minute for Pavarotti at the Grammys and just shook us all to our core and made us question the universe by singing Nessun Dorma? #RipArethaFranklin https://t.co/Fg5tbxpl9R
— shonda rhimes (@shondarhimes) August 16, 2018
I’m sitting in prayer for the wonderful golden spirit Aretha Franklin.
— Ms. Ross (@DianaRoss) August 16, 2018
Aretha Franklin was the only thing I wanted to listen to in the car growing up. I always asked my mom to put her on. Rest In Peace, Queen if soul. An irreplaceable legend!
— Zara Larsson (@zaralarsson) August 16, 2018
The loss of @ArethaFranklin is a blow for everybody who loves real music: Music from the heart, the soul and the Church. Her voice was unique, her piano playing underrated – she was one of my favourite pianists. pic.twitter.com/ug5oZYywAz
— Elton John (@eltonofficial) August 16, 2018
— Be A King (@BerniceKing) August 16, 2018
Let’s all take a moment to give thanks for the beautiful life of Aretha Franklin, the Queen of our souls, who inspired us all for many many years. She will be missed but the memory of her greatness as a musician and a fine human being will live with us forever. Love Paul pic.twitter.com/jW4Gpwfdts
— Paul McCartney (@PaulMcCartney) August 16, 2018
The Queen of Soul has left this earth to sit on her throne in heaven. How blessed we were to hear the best that God had to offer in her voice. RESPECT!
📷: Mark Seliger pic.twitter.com/v9OxtyrZ74
— Lenny Kravitz (@LennyKravitz) August 16, 2018
I’m absolutely devastated by Aretha’s passing. She was truly one of a kind. She was more than the Queen of Soul. She was a national treasure to be cherished by every generation throughout the world. (1/2)
— Clive Davis (@CliveDavis) August 16, 2018
Lady Soul. The first woman inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Aretha Franklin was an artist of passion, sophistication and command, whose recordings remain anthems that defined soul music. Long live the Queen. pic.twitter.com/3gJDuV2KF4
— Rock Hall (@rockhall) August 16, 2018
R E S P E C T
— Jamie Lee Curtis (@jamieleecurtis) August 16, 2018
Goodbye Ms. Aretha. You were my idol. The greatest singer of all time. Every note you sang was pure and authentic and pierced our hearts with joy and pain and life.
— Idina Menzel (@idinamenzel) August 16, 2018
One of the highlights of my career was singing with #ArethaFranklin at The Tony Awards. It was an out of body experience for me. One of greatest singers of all time. You will be missed by all. https://t.co/L8dIIhyR9Y
— Hugh Jackman (@RealHughJackman) August 16, 2018
— John Stamos (@JohnStamos) August 16, 2018
This photo was taken in 2012 when Aretha & I performed at a tribute celebration for our friend Marvin Hamlisch. It’s difficult to conceive of a world without her. Not only was she a uniquely brilliant singer,but her commitment to civil rights made an indelible impact on the world pic.twitter.com/Px9zVB90MM
— Barbra Streisand (@BarbraStreisand) August 16, 2018
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) August 16, 2018
Aretha helped define the American experience. In her voice, we could feel our history, all of it and in every shade—our power and our pain, our darkness and our light, our quest for redemption and our hard-won respect. May the Queen of Soul rest in eternal peace. pic.twitter.com/bfASqKlLc5
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) August 16, 2018
This is the face of a young man who couldn’t believe he was actually singing with the GREATEST OF ALL TIME. Thank you, Ms. Franklin for blessing us with your incomparable gift. Honored to have shared the stage with you even for a moment. Always bowing down to you. #QueenofSoul pic.twitter.com/4bZVAWcqeS
— Justin Timberlake (@jtimberlake) August 16, 2018
The @AmericanIdol fam had the great privilege of working with the iconic Aretha Franklin for a special ep in Detroit. The world will miss her as she’s left an indelible mark on our culture. Her artistry & music will move & inspire us forever. Rest in peace to the Queen of Soul. pic.twitter.com/3LaOL6wvkn
— Ryan Seacrest (@RyanSeacrest) August 16, 2018
♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ☁️ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ pic.twitter.com/J2Y1eEbSXo
— Ariana Grande (@ArianaGrande) August 16, 2018
— Lionel Richie (@LionelRichie) August 16, 2018
Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul.. A true legend and world icon…the greatest vocalist and entertainer of all time. Aretha paved the way for so many great artists, over 6 decades of music. Thank you for all of your contributions. My condolences and prayers are with the family. pic.twitter.com/akEgX7sv1j
— Steve Harvey (@IAmSteveHarvey) August 16, 2018
Her Royal Highness, the Queen of Soul, has passed. What Aretha Franklin left us lives on. Her music & her royal presence. A civil rights & women’s rights activist, she’s an international treasure w/ a powerhouse voice overflowing w/ HEART like no other. We love you, Aretha!! pic.twitter.com/DVkFyPVLN9
— Paula Abdul (@PaulaAbdul) August 16, 2018