Published: Fri, August 31, 2018
Arts&Culture | By Kristi Paul

Aretha Franklin: Four Tops lead Detroit tribute concert before funeral

Aretha Franklin: Four Tops lead Detroit tribute concert before funeral

The ceremony - which you can live stream below - will conclude at 3:00 p.m. ET, after a performance from Jennifer Holliday and the Aretha Franklin Celebration Choir. The church also hosted Rosa Parks' funeral in 2005, at which Franklin sang. The church where she got her start as a gospel singer, New Bethel is where Franklin's father was the longtime pastor and where she learned the gospel fundamentals that would make her a soul institution.

The casket for Aretha Franklin arrived at Greater Grace Temple Church in Detroit, Michigan the morning of August 31, 2018, carried by multiple pallbearers out of a white hearse.


The tribute is a nod to Franklin's funky '80s tune, Freeway of Love, which prominently featured the auto in the lyrics and video.

Bill Clinton reportedly giving a speech, and the likes of Jennifer Hudson, Faith Hill and Chaka Khan are also said to be taking to the stage.


Bishop Charles Ellis III of Greater Grace knows well of the boldface guest list and surrounding pomp and circumstance, but he has a higher mission in mind for the service that may well exceed five hours. She will be performing the classic gospel song, "I'm Going Up Yonder". He said they "talked all the time", the last just a couple weeks before she became too ill to speak.

Over the past few days, fans have been gathering together in the Queen of Soul's hometown to pay their final respects to the legendary singer, who died on August 16 at the age of 76 from pancreatic cancer.


Earlier in the week, CNN reported that a niece of Aretha's showed up with burgers, water and t-shirts for fans queuing to see the Queen Of Soul.

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