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Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin dies, aged 76

Legendary singer Aretha Franklin has died, aged 76.

The Queen of Soul had been gravely ill with advanced pancreatic cancer and passed away late last night, surrounded by family and friends in Detroit.

Franklin’s booming voice inspired millions, making her one of the most respected artists of all-time.

With hits including Respect (1967), Natural Woman (1968) and I Say a Little Prayer (1968), Franklin was a multiple Grammy-award winner.

In 1987, Aretha Louise Franklin became the first woman to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

A family statement said, “In one of the darkest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our heart.

“We have lost the matriarch and rock of our family. The love she had for her children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and cousins knew no bounds.”

Tributes have been pouring in from around the world, with everyone from fans to music royalty remembering the impact Franklin had on their lives.

Alan Jones has praised the singer as having possibly the greatest voice in history.

“You’ve just got to draw breath a little. What we’re talking about here, in the sweep of history, we may be honouring one of the greatest ever voices.

“Those who know, speak of her and Whitney Houston as the two greatest female voices ever.”