Song of the Day: Aretha Franklin “Rock Steady”
Last week, we lost one of the greatest musical artists of all time. Ms. Aretha Franklin was a creative titan among titans, a singer’s singer, and a force of nature. From the Young, Gifted and Black album,”Rock Steady” was released on Atlantic Records in 1971. Aretha wrote the song, inspired by a powerful rhythm that her drummer (who happens to be my teacher and mentor and who I wrote about previously here) was laying down. Its creator simply calls it “a funky and low down beat”.
Bernard “Pretty” Purdie began his musical relationship with Aretha Franklin as her drummer musical director in 1970 and stayed with her for five years. “Backing her was like floating in seventh heaven,” says Purdie. When you listen to the lyrics and hear “Let’s call this song exactly what it is,” you know exactly what she’s talking about.
Aretha “helped define the American experience,” said President Barack Obama. “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.”
We love you and we thank you eternally Aretha Franklin. We send love and condolences to your family and friends. You have touched us all. May you rest in peace and power.