La Reine de la musique soul est morte.

The Queen of Soul Music has died.

Je n’ai réalisé qu’hier que je connaissais toutes les chansons d’Aretha Franklin.

Only yesterday did I realize that I knew each of Aretha Franklin’s songs.

Pas les paroles dans leur intégralité, mais leur mélodie et refrain.

Not every single word of the lyrics, but the melody and the chorus.

Ce n’est pas souvent qu’une chanteuse laisse une telle empreinte musicale.

It’s not often that a woman singer leaves such a musical soundtrack behind.

J’ai aussi réalisé en entendant les chansons d’Aretha Franklin passées sur toutes les chaines de télé et les stations de radio que je les avais toutes entendues alors que je vivais encore en France.

I also realized, listening to Aretha Franklin’s songs, played on all TV channels and radio stations that I had heard all of them while I still lived in France.

Il y a eu aussi bien sûr la comédie musicale des Blues Brothers en 1980 qui l’a fait davantage connaitre de notre côté de l’Atlantique. Un succès phénoménal en France.

There was of course the musical comedy The Blue Brothers in 1980 which gave even more visibility to Aretha Franklin on the other side of the Atlantic . A blockbuster in France.

Il y eut aussi une amie de campus qui n’écoutait pratiquement que des chanteuses. Quand je lui rendais visite, on sirotait nos cafés en écoutant Patti Smith, Annie Lenox, Pat Benatar, Rickie Lee Jones, ou bien encore Janis Joplin.

There was also a girlfriend on the campus who listened almost exclusively to women singers. When I paid her a visit, we sipped our coffees listening to Patti Smith, Annie Lenox, Pat Benatar, Rickie Lee Jones, or still Janis Joplin.

Et il y eut ce fameux duo Aretha Franklin Annie Lenox Sisters Are Doin It For Themselves.

And there was this infamous duet Aretha Franklin Annie Lenox Sisters Are Doin It For Themselves.

De toutes les chansons d’Aretha Franklin, j’ai toujours préféré I Say a Little Prayer and Respect.

Of all her songs I’ve always prefered I Say a Little Prayer and Respect.

I Say a Little Prayer est une telle consolation quand rien ne va plus.

I Say a Little Prayer is such a soft consolation when things go down.

Quant à Respect la chanson ne m’a vraiment donné la chair de poule qu’après des années de vie aux États Unis.

As for Respect it’s only after many years spent in the U.S. that the song gave me goosebumps.

Le mot Respect s’écrit et se traduit de la même façon en français et en anglais.

The noun Respect is spelled and translated the same way in French and English.

Le sens n’est sans doute pas tout à fait le même dans les deux pays.

The meaning is probably not exactly the same in both countries.

Un demi-siècle plus tard la chanson Respect a encore la même pertinence. Je ne sais pas ce que ressens à cet égard.

Peut-être juste du respect.

Half a century later the song Respect has still the same relevance. I don’t know what I feel about it.

Maybe only respect.


  1. She was a wonderful talent. We watched The Blues Brothers as a way of paying tribute to her soul and her music. I’m happy to know that the movie was a hit in France.

  2. She was great and there’s no one who can take her place.

  3. A wonderful tribute Evelyne.

  4. Beautiful heartfelt tribute Evelyn… I even loved her name …it had a particular ring to it…

  5. Behind the Story says:

    Like you, I was surprised that I knew so many of her songs. When I was younger, I listened to music without always paying attention to who the singer was–especially music I heard on the radio.

    It’s often surprising to Americans how the people we listen to here may be heard all over the world. When I lived in the Philippines, I became acquainted with several Filipino singers and a couple of songs sung in Tagalog, but most of what I heard on the radio I could have heard back in the US.

    • Totally agree with you, Nicki. American singers and bands are known everywhere across the world. Harder for the rest of the world to have the same audience. The language is the main reason. Plus powerful marketing. And great talent too:)

      • Behind the Story says:

        You’re right about the language reason. I’ve noticed a fair number of singers from Scandinavian countries who sing in English and become worldwide hits.

      • Same with younger French singers and bands. They don’t always gain international fame but certainly know that English lyrics will help.

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