Forgive us because we’re still in shock, but we can’t believe the news. Aretha Franklin announced she will be retiring later this year.
The iconic singer, who paved the way for many in the industry, is set to retire after the release of her new album, telling Detroit’s WDIV Local 4, "I feel very, very enriched and satisfied with respect to where my career came from, and where it is now. I’ll be pretty much satisfied, but I'm not going to go anywhere and just sit down and do nothing. That wouldn't be good either.”
While the announcement is bittersweet––with Franklin adding that singing is “what I’ve done all of my life”––the legend isn’t completely done. She’ll be performing at select events, but no major tours or concerts.
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Franklin added that her grandchildren are all heading off to college and she hopes to spend more time with them. Still, before she settles into retirement she's leaving us all one last gift: a new album. It’s expected to drop in September and Franklin says she’s “exuberant” about it, adding that Stevie Wonder will produce a few songs and she’ll be exclusively recording in Detroit.
It’s bittersweet news, but Aretha has given us all hit after hit. Now it’s time we all give her a chance to relax and spend time with her family.