<<Home Niagara Falls Reporter Archive>>

The Queen of Soul Returns to Western New York

By Ryan Wolf

Former Buffalo resident, Aretha Franklin, sings at Seneca Niagara.

Though many talented musicians of yesteryear continue to provide nostalgic entertainment on tour, few can boast of a career as impactful and celebrated as Aretha Franklin.

The reigning Queen of Soul and former Western New York resident performed Saturday night (March 2) at the Seneca Niagara Casino, bringing her immortal voice to an audience’s eager ears.

Franklin, who lived on Glenwood Ave. in Buffalo as a young child, is now 70. Uninhibited by age, she continues to haunt with her powerful pipes, and memorably performed at Barack Obama’s 2009 inauguration.

For many, however, her music best defines the spirit of the 60's when her towering Otis Redding-penned hit “Respect” first electrified the airwaves. Songs like “Think,” “Chain of Fools,” and “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” stand as tour-de-force anthems from a turbulent era that remain resonant in our own.

Voted the greatest voice of all time, and the ninth greatest artist, by Rolling Stone magazine, Franklin has won 20 Grammys over the course of her illustrious career. Her 1967 record “I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You” transformed American soul music and inspired a generation of listeners moved by the sincerity, passion, and intense beauty of her entrancing vocals. She further cemented her fame as the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and as a winner of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Those who attended her concert at the Seneca Niagara Showroom were fortunate enough to take in the voice and presence of a woman who will remain an icon long after she has left the world. Setting the stirring standard for soul music, Aretha Franklin is a true national treasure. Her connection to the area, and her willingness to return to it, is an honor that concertgoers assuredly felt firsthand.



Niagara Falls Reporter - Publisher Frank Parlato Jr. www.niagarafallsreporter.com

Mar05 , 2013