R.I.P.: Music Legend Aretha Franklin Dies At The Age Of 76

Today is a sad day. Aretha Franklin, Queen Of Soul, is dead at the age of 76 of pancreatic cancer. And, with her passing, we have lost another special and unique legend.

I am speechless here and, yet, even though we knew this day would come, it seemed that she was ageless and and everlasting. Her persona and vocal genius were so powerful that they seemed immortal.

And, it is, via her recordings and videos. For, even though we cannot see her in the present, we can still feel and hear her through the wonders of digital and analogue music.

As I write this article, I am listening to CNN’s Don Lemon tearfully recall his special relationship with her. She was a constant in his life and touched him on many levels.

And, apparently, she loved her Givenchy bag. Treasured it. How sweet is this?

Her musical presence and transcendent voice were such a gift to the music world and will live with us forever and ever Amen. You can download or stream her music on iTunes or Apple Music.

But, today, many are mourning the loss of this special vocalist and friend who is revered by so many.

Her family released a statement, saying:

“In one of the darkest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our heart. We have lost the matriarch and rock of our family.”

On behalf of the MCL community, I would like to extend my condolences to her family, friends and fans on this very sad day. Embrace the memories and keep them alive. Her music will continue to live forever.

For further coverage, please visit CNN in real time or CNN.Com.

About Masterclass Lady

Rosanne (Giallonardo) Simunovic began her musical career in Timmins, Ontario. She studied piano with Anne Pizzale and later, at an advanced level, with Soeur Anita Vaugeois (Sister Cecile of Les Soeurs De L’Assomption in Timmins). Her vocal and accompaniment skills were nurtured by her aunt, the late Dorothea Mascioli. When Rosanne graduated from O’Gorman High School, she moved on to the University of Toronto where she continued her piano and vocal studies while attaining a Bachelor of Arts Degree. She was hired as a piano accompanist for several musical companies, most notably, the National Ballet Of Canada. She presently holds an A.R.C.T. Teacher’s Diploma in Voice from the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. Rosanne has studied choral conducting with numerous well known Canadian Conductors, including Wayne Riddell of Montreal, Quebec and the internationally renowned Dr. Elmer Iseler. She has been a founding member of numerous community-based arts organizations: the Timmins Arts Council, later known as Arts & Culture Timmins, the Timmins Symphony Orchestra, and, the Timmins Youth Singers…as well as the TYS Alumnus choir, the Timmins Concert Singers. In 1987, she was also selected to be the conductor of the Timmins Board Of Education Choir, comprised of talented students from Grades 5 to 8. In 1988, she was elected to the Board Of Directors of the Ontario Choral Federation (now known as Choirs Ontario), where she served as Chair of the Festivals Committee for six consecutive seasons. In 1996, in honour of the Ontario Choral Federation’s 25th Anniversary, Rosanne was selected as one of 25 recipients of the OCF’s Distinguished Service Award for outstanding contribution to the choral art. The ceremony was presided by Lieutenant Governor, Hal Jackman. In November 1997, Rosanne Simunovic was selected by the Rotary Club Of Timmins to receive the prestigious Paul Harris Award for her years of dedication to the artistic development of young musical talent in Timmins. In August of 2002, Rosanne Simunovic was selected by the Board Of Directors of Choirs Ontario to serve as Conductor of both the Provincial Junior and Teen Choir Camps, now renamed in honour of the Camp Benefactors, Don and Lillian Wright. In November 2002, Rosanne was the one of the recipients of the Commemorative Medal for the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II, honouring her work in the development of the arts in Timmins. Under Rosanne Simunovic’s direction, the Timmins Youth Singers and the Timmins Concert Singers have been featured in numerous choral festivals and performing opportunities outside of Timmins. In 1985, they were selected to partici

3 Responses to “R.I.P.: Music Legend Aretha Franklin Dies At The Age Of 76”

  1. Another one of the greats gone. There is a country song, “Whose Going To Fill Their Shoes?” that expresses my thoughts on her passing, even though it was written about other giants of the music family.

    Oddly, “The Queen of Soul” passed on the same date as the “King of Rock and Roll,” albeit 41 years later.

    Rest in Peace Aretha Franklin!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The world was so enriched by her life.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. A deserving person to have the word “Legend” attached to their name. She was a consummate performer and vocalist. I just read she had a 5 octave range. Stunning. She was also an accomplished pianist.
    She is the genius behind the arrangement of Respect as apparently she wrote the whole thing out on paper in the studio. The song was written originally from a male perspective by Otis Redding, but she switched it up and it became an iconic anthem for women the world over.
    I hope the millennial generation Googles and Wiki’s her name to learn more about this one in a generation phenomenal artist.

    Liked by 1 person

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