The emotional adventure of every week in Detroit following the passing of the Queen of Soul.
Brian Kaufman, Detroit Loose Press

Aretha Franklin racked up a towering litany of honors all through her 76 years, from the Presidential Medal of Freedom to the Grammy Lifetime Fulfillment Award.

On Monday, the Queen of Soul was once bestowed probably the most prestigious prize but since her demise in August, as she joined a lofty listing of people and establishments venerated through the Pulitzer Prize board with a particular quotation.

Singer Aretha Franklin plays an track in tribute to singer Luciano Pavarotti on the 1998 MusiCares get advantages dinner in New York February 23. Pavarotti was once venerated because the 1998 MusiCares Individual of the 12 months for his humanitarian and philanthropic efforts. The dinner benefited the MusiCares Basis which aids needy musicians with well being and human products and services. The 40th Annual Grammy Awards can be offered at Radio Town Song Corridor in New York February 25, 1998. (Picture: Fred Prouser, Reuters)

“Like folks and establishments all over The usa, since her demise, we’ve been reflecting on her lifestyles and paintings and contribution to American track and society, and it was once in that spirit we have been actually venerated as a way to do that,” mentioned Pulitzer Prize administrator Dana Canedy.

In contrast to the Pulitzers’ once a year awarded prizes in fields equivalent to journalism and drama, particular citations are granted selectively and sporadically, as an individual or crew’s better frame of labor necessarily forces the case.

Franklin stays a trailblazer even posthumously: The Pulitzers have granted simply 43 particular citations since 1930, and Franklin is the primary girl venerated with one.

Canedy mentioned that whilst “in fact” the board was once acutely aware of that context, “we don’t award prizes for political causes. We award excellence. We award the paintings — whether or not track, literature, journalism, drama — that actually displays the most efficient of the most efficient. And I don’t assume any person can argue that’s what Aretha Franklin and her paintings constitute.”

A Franklin circle of relatives consultant mentioned she was once blown away through phrase of the prize Monday. The Pulitzer is the most recent high-profile honor for the Queen of Soul since she died Aug. 16 in Detroit. Others are an NAACP Symbol Award, the Stellar Awards’ newly instituted ICON Award for gospel greats and a Phoenix Award from the Congressional Black Caucus. 

“I used to be simply actually stunned and excited and overjoyed,” mentioned Franklin’s niece, Sabrina Owens. “Even in her demise, Aretha continues to be breaking down obstacles and opening doorways for girls. We’re so glad she’s being venerated on this manner.”

Franklin “actually has left an indelible mark in this international,” mentioned Owens. “We’re simply so happy with her.”

Different musicians venerated this century with the Pulitzers’ particular quotation come with nation pioneer Hank Williams (2010), rock poet Bob Dylan (2008) and jazz greats John Coltrane (2007) and Thelonious Monk (2006). 

Extra: Aretha Franklin wins 2019 Pulitzer Prize for contributions to track, tradition

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Extra: Aretha Franklin quotes: The Queen of Soul in her personal phrases

Officially, the Pulitzer board hailed Franklin’s “indelible contribution to American track and tradition for greater than 5 a long time.” Canedy cited the singer-songwriter’s wide-ranging, culture-shifting contributions around the board.

“Whether or not it’s ‘Appreciate,’ or ‘(You Make Me Really feel Like) A Herbal Girl,’ or fill-in-the-blank, folks keep in mind the have an effect on of sure Aretha Franklin songs on their lives,” mentioned the Pulitzer administrator. “There are songs which might be anthems for girls. There are songs which might be gospel and jazz influences that transfer us all. And we felt it was once suitable — certainly necessary — to honor and have a good time that. And, in that manner, the queen lives.”

Touch Detroit Loose Press track creator Brian McCollum: 313-223-4450 or


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