Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul: The Queen of Soul

Mark Bego, Author St. Martin's Press $18.95 (340p) ISBN 978-0-312-02863-3
Pop/soul singer Franklin refuses to discuss publicly her private life. ``There are few singing stars who could get away with such a small degree of personal exposure and still retain their popularity,'' notes Bego ( Linda Gray ) of a woman whose pain and passion can be heard in songs that have earned her 14 Grammys in a career spanning three decades. Unfortunately, the author's interviews here with those close to the performer, such as Atlantic Records producer Jerry Wexler and Arista Records president Clive Davis, are so unrevealing that he focuses on Franklin's music rather than her personality, offering a discography and album-by-album analysis. There is a detailed discussion of Franklin's career, which began in Detroit in the 1950s when she sang gospel music in church, then progressed to jazz, blues and later soul and pop music styles. Readers will learn more about the ``queen'' in her recordings than in these pages. Photos not seen by PW. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/01/1989
Release date: 09/01/1989
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