Aretha Franklin – Think

Aretha equals greatness. I always think of the Blues Brothers movie this was featured in years after it was released. Franklin wrote this with Teddy White, who was her husband and manager. In the song, Aretha sings about freedom and respect for women.

The song peaked at #7 in the Billboard 100 and #26 in the UK in 1968.

When I’m asked who my favorite female singers are…Aretha always comes up. Her soul had soul. She could take a mediocre song and make it great. I’ve heard her do songs such as “You Light Up My Life” and put life and soul in them.

From Songfacts

Jerry Wexler, who worked with Franklin on many of her hit songs, produced this track at the Atlantic Records recording studios in New York. Members of the Muscle Shoals rhythm section played at the session.

This song was released on May 2, 1968, less than a month after the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. on April 4. Franklin’s family was close to King, and Aretha attended his funeral. The song’s insistant refrain of “freedom” evoked one of King’s famous quotes: “Free at last, free at last, thank God almighty we are free at last.”

Franklin performed this in the 1980 movie The Blues Brothers starring Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi. The Blues Brothers themselves also recorded the song, which was released as the B-side of their 1989 UK single “Everybody Needs Somebody To Love.”

This was Franklin’s sixth #1 single on the R&B chart.

Leading up to the 2018 midterm elections in America, Levi’s used this in a commercial encouraging people to vote. The spot mostly used the “freedom” part of the song.

Think

You better think (think)
Think about what you’re trying to do to me
Think (think, think)
Let your mind go, let yourself be free

Let’s go back, let’s go back
Let’s go way on, way back when
I didn’t even know you
You couldn’t have been too much more than ten (just a child)
I ain’t no psychiatrist, I ain’t no doctor with degrees
But, it don’t take too much high IQ’s
To see what you’re doing to me

You better think (think)
Think about what you’re trying to do to me
Yeah, think (think, think)
Let your mind go, let yourself be free

Oh, freedom (freedom), freedom (freedom)
Oh, freedom, yeah, freedom
Freedom (freedom), oh oh freedom (freedom)
Freedom, oh freedom

Hey, think about it, think about it

There ain’t nothing you could ask
I could answer you but I won’t (I won’t)
But I was gonna change, but I’m not
If you keep doing things I don’t

You better think (think)
Think about what you’re trying to do to me
Think (think)
Let your mind go, let yourself be free

People walking around everyday
Playing games, taking scores
Trying to make other people lose their minds
Ah, be careful you don’t lose yours, oh

Think (think)
Think about what you’re trying to do to me, ooh
Think (think)
Let your mind go, let yourself be free

You need me (need me)
And I need you (don’t you know)
Without eachother there ain’t nothing people can do, oh

Think about it, baby (What are you trying to do me)
Yeah, oh baby, think about it now, yeah
(Think about, forgiveness, dream about forgiveness)
To the ball, forgiveness
Think about it baby
To the ball, forgiveness
To the ball, forgiveness

My Favorite Singers

There are so many singers that I cannot possibly list them all. I could make a top 30 and not get them all. This is my personal favorite top 10 plus some extra.

For the most part, I like singers with soul and meaning to their singing…not vocal gymnastics.

1…Aretha Franklin – Aretha could make any song better by singing it.

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2…Van Morrison, Them and Solo  – Probably my favorite male singer.

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3…John Lennon, Beatles – John hated his voice and always wanted an effect on it…It didn’t need it…one of his best performances was “A Day In The Life”

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4…Bob Dylan – Bob changed popular singing.  I would rather hear Bob sing than many of the great traditional singers.

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5…Elvis Presley – Hey he’s Elvis…

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6…Otis Redding – Just a fantastic singer and performer and just taking off before he was killed in a plane crash.

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7…Mick Jagger, Rolling Stones – Mick makes the most out of his voice.

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8…John Fogerty…CCR – If I could have the voice of anyone…it would be Fogerty. The power that John has is incredible…his voice is its own instrument.

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9…Janis Joplin – She put everything she had in each song. Her last producer Paul A. Rothchild was teaching Janis how to hold back and sing more traditional to save her voice for old age…which never came.

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10…Johnny Cash – Last but far from least.  Only one man can sound like Cash…and that is Cash

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Honorable Mention…any of these could have easily been on the list.

Steve Marriott, Paul McCartney, Levon Helm, Bessie Smith, Little Richard, Roger Daltrey, Pete Townshend, Elton John, Neil Young, Roy Orbison, Smokey Robinson, Sam Cooke, Joe Cocker, Billie Holiday, Freddie Mercury, Kate Bush, Ella Fitzgerald, Paul Rodgers, David Bowie.

 

 

 

 

Aretha Franklin – Baby I Love You

The world lost a voice that cannot be replaced. She was the real deal and no one else had such a soulful voice.

This Aretha Franklin song was released in 1967 and it was on the “Aretha Arrives” album. It peaked at #4 on the US Billboard Charts.

This woman could sing the phonebook and I would listen. This is just one of many songs I like from her… She has sold over 75 million records in her career. This is the first song I remember hearing from her.

“Baby, I Love You”

If you want my lovin’
If you really do
don’t be afraid baby
Just ask me
You know I’m gonna give it to you
Oh and I do declare
I want to see you with it
Stretch out your arms little boy,
You’re gonna get it
Cause I love you
ain’t no doubt about it
Baby I love you,
I love you, I love you
I love you, baby I love youIf you feel you want to kiss me
Go right ahead I don’t mind
All you got to do is
Snap your fingers and I’ll come running
I ain’t lying, I ain’t lying
I heard you once little boy
You know you got it
I’d deny my own self
Before I see you without it
I love you
Ain’t no doubt about it
Baby I love you, I love you, I love you
I love you, baby I love youSomeday you might want to run away
And leave me sittin’ here cryin’
But if it’s all the same to you baby
I’m gonna stop you from sayin’ goodbye
Baby I love you
Baby I need ya
Said I want ya
Got to have you baby
Don’t let your neighbors
Tell you I don’t want you