Friday, January 21, 2022

Making a way for the Queen of Soul

Capucine Holmes


Detroit’s Music Weekend was monumental this year: the Queen of Soul had a hometown street named in her honor, as crowds flocked to be among the first to walk Aretha Franklin Way — and enjoy a complimentary, 100-minute concert by the woman herself.

The spectacular show on the Madison Central Stage included songs like “Something He Can Feel”, the bluesy “Sweet Sixteen,” “Skylark,” and “A Brand New Me.” There were thousands in attendance, including Mary Wilson of the legendary Supremes; Rev. Jesse Jackson; champion boxer Tommy Hearns; and singer Freda Payne.

The entire Music Weekend was made up of legendary music from all genres — with a lineup assembled by music director Kern Brantley, who has worked with such artists as Beyonce, Mary J. Blige, Lady Gaga, Chris Brown, and Destiny’s Child.

Topping off the weekend was the R&B Hall of Fame induction ceremony at the Historic Music Hall. Honorees included Las Vegas’ own Bubba Knight; Martha Reeves of Martha and the Vandellas; and the late James Brown, represented by his daughter, Deana. Mary Wilson served as mistress of ceremonies.

Aretha Franklin

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