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A collection of quotes, thoughts and sayings by Aretha Franklin on men, women, god, happiness, faith, love, respect, music, church, gospel and much more.

56 Aretha Franklin Quotes & Sayings

Quick Facts

Also Listed In

Born On
25 March 1942 AD

Born In
Memphis, Tennessee, U.S.

Age
75

Aretha Franklin, better known as the ‘Queen of Soul’, is the cultural and musical icon of the world. She is one of the best classic singing divas. Aretha showed her love towards music at an early age and started to learn piano and songs. Having a musical background, signing came naturally to her. While Aretha was 14, her father recognized her passion for singing and her talent and helped her in getting her first recording deal. Her first song ‘Songs of Faith’ was released in 1956. She was later signed by Columbia Records and started recording pop music. It didn’t take much time for her music to be recognized, as her debut album ‘Aretha: With the Ray Bryant Combo’ was an instant hit. After releasing few more albums, she earned the crown of ‘new star female vocalist’ by many A-listed magazines. Her powerful singing has influenced many music producers ‘Chain of Fools’, ‘Freeway of Love’ and ‘I Know You Were Waiting (For Me)’ are some of the best songs of this eighteen Grammy Award winning singer. Aretha’s sayings on life, music and women are really thought-provoking. We have collected some of her quotes from her songs, observations and life.

Everybody wants respect. In their own way, three-year-olds would like respect, and acknowledgment, in their terms.

- Aretha Franklin

We didn't have music videos. You weren't an overnight sensation. You had to work at it and learn your craft: how to take care of your voice, how to pace your concerts, all that trial and error.

- Aretha Franklin

Sometimes, what you're looking for is already there.

- Aretha Franklin

It really is an honor if I can be inspirational to a younger singer or person. It means I've done my job.

- Aretha Franklin

Who hasn't had a weight issue? If not the body, certainly the big head!

- Aretha Franklin

The love of my life? I'm much too young to answer that question.

- Aretha Franklin

I don't think I was a catalyst for the women's movement.

- Aretha Franklin

It's very satisfying. To perform the way you want to. And the way you know that you can.

- Aretha Franklin

Gospel goes with me wherever I go. Gospel is a constant with me.

- Aretha Franklin

People really don't have to give you anything, so appreciate what people give you.

- Aretha Franklin

I think women and children and older people are the three least-respected groups in our society.

- Aretha Franklin

Women absolutely deserve respect.

- Aretha Franklin

I've been around long enough for people to know who I am and what my contributions are. They know me as more than just an artist. I think they know me as a woman as well.

- Aretha Franklin

Politics are not my arena. Music is.

- Aretha Franklin

I like Beyonce's music - some of it, not all of it.

- Aretha Franklin

I don't feel one's personal medical condition is everybody's business. It just isn't something you advertise, and it's not open to discussion.

- Aretha Franklin

I was in my dad's church, his Baptist church, and I think the first song I ever performed was 'Jesus Be a Fence Around Me.'

- Aretha Franklin

I came up in gospel.

- Aretha Franklin

Parents have to really talk to their children before they leave home.

- Aretha Franklin

I'm never tired of going to the studio. I enjoy recording and documenting everything and trying new things.

- Aretha Franklin

Music changes, and I'm gonna change right along with it.

- Aretha Franklin

I know people I feel are extremely talented, but I don't know that I've ever heard any geniuses.

- Aretha Franklin

Yes, I've always been fashion conscious.

- Aretha Franklin

I've never recorded anything I didn't like.

- Aretha Franklin

I love 'Anne of Green Gables.' I have for years. That's one of my favourite things. She's such a can-do kind of girl; that's why I'm crazy about her.

- Aretha Franklin

I love all music.

- Aretha Franklin

When God loves you, what can be better than that?

- Aretha Franklin

I donate heavily to the church and various churches in the Detroit community and food banks.

- Aretha Franklin

Now, occasionally I will still have that quarter pounder because I love fast food, but you have to keep it to a minimum.

- Aretha Franklin

Let's start with the church. As you know, it's my background, it's a natural setting for me and it's definitely my roots.

- Aretha Franklin

And I was booked once to go on 'Ed Sullivan' and I got bumped and ran out the back door crying.

- Aretha Franklin

I saw the Supremes when they were still singing in little black skirts and white blouses.

- Aretha Franklin

Falling out of love is like losing weight. It's a lot easier putting it on than taking it off.

- Aretha Franklin

I'm the lady next door when I'm not on stage.

- Aretha Franklin

I'm a big woman. I need big hair.

- Aretha Franklin

I think the hardest thing is losing weight. That's the hardest thing more than anything else.

- Aretha Franklin

I sing to the realists; people who accept it like it is.

- Aretha Franklin

I always felt rock and roll was very, very wholesome music.

- Aretha Franklin

I go to the healthier foods that are less chemically treated. I am drinking lots of water to get rid of the toxins in my body. It's a natural flushing. Water flushes your system and is also very good for your skin.

- Aretha Franklin

I am doing what I love to do, and you cannot beat that, especially when the audience appreciates what you prepare for them. It's very, very gratifying.

- Aretha Franklin

My faith always has been and always will be important to me.

- Aretha Franklin

Don't say Aretha is making a comeback, because I've never been away!

- Aretha Franklin

Being the Queen is not all about singing, and being a diva is not all about singing. It has much to do with your service to people. And your social contributions to your community and your civic contributions as well.

- Aretha Franklin

Be your own artist, and always be confident in what you're doing. If you're not going to be confident, you might as well not be doing it.

- Aretha Franklin

We all require and want respect, man or woman, black or white. It's our basic human right.

- Aretha Franklin

Being a singer is a natural gift. It means I'm using to the highest degree possible the gift that God gave me to use. I'm happy with that.

- Aretha Franklin

Every birthday is a gift. Every day is a gift.

- Aretha Franklin

R-E-S-P-E-C-T!!!

- Aretha Franklin

If a song's about something I've experienced or that could've happened to me it's good. But if it's alien to me, I couldn't lend anything to it. Because that's what soul is all about.

- Aretha Franklin

I've always felt that rock & roll was very, very wholesome.

- Aretha Franklin

I sing to the realists .People who accept it like it is .

- Aretha Franklin

The man who gets me is getting one hell of a woman.

- Aretha Franklin

Music does a lot of things for a lot of people. It's transporting, for sure. It can take you right back, years back, to the very moment certain things happened in your life. It's uplifting, it's encouraging, it's strengthening.

- Aretha Franklin

Columbia was a wonderful label for me. Wonderful. The records I made there garnered me an audience. I won a number of polls during the years that I was at Columbia. The Downbeat Jazz Poll. Leonard Feather, who was a huge critic back in the day, different polls that he had. The Playboy poll, a number of polls. So the music was great.

- Aretha Franklin

Sam Cooke had a huge influence on me. He left the gospel field at one point and went into the secular, and he had this huge hit, 'You Send Me.' Irma, my older sister, and I heard 'You Send Me' on the radio while we were driving through the South one night. We had to stop the car. We got out and danced around the car out on the highway.

- Aretha Franklin

I love producing, writing. I rarely write with other writers unless I have a real great respect for them. Like Burt Bacharach, or Carole Sager, or Stevie Wonder. Somebody like Smokey - like that. Otherwise, I choose to write alone.

- Aretha Franklin