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Aretha Franklin Quotes about Love, Life and Respect

Our latest collection of Aretha Franklin quotes on Everyday Power. Enjoy!

Aretha Franklin died on August 16, 2018, leaving behind a record of over 20 chart-topping R&B hits, about 50 Top 40 hits and 18 Grammy awards to her name.

Known for her amazing voice and vocal talents, the ‘The Queen of Soul’ will be remembered for defining the golden age of soul music of the 1960s.

Aretha Franklin was born on March 25, 1942, in a religious household in Memphis, Tennessee. Her father was a Baptist minister and gospel singer while her mother was a gospel singer as well. She started her career as a child singing gospel before embarking on a secular career where she achieved great success with hits such as “Respect”, “A Natural Woman”, “Spanish Harlem” and “Think”.

Though her passing leaves behind loved ones and the music world in mourning, it also presents the chance to reflect on the life of one of the greatest singers of all time.

She was a strong woman who always demanded respect and used her Everyday Power to reach the top of her game. Her music is empowering and we can all draw inspiration from her words of wisdom.

In that respect, below are some powerful Aretha Franklin quotes to inspire you to live your best life.

Also check out our collection of quotes by Dolly Parton that will inspire you to live your best life.

Aretha Franklin Quotes about Love, Life and Respect

1. I sing to the realists. People who accept it like it is. – Aretha Franklin

2. Falling out of love is like losing weight. It’s a lot easier putting it on than taking it off. – Aretha Franklin

3. We all require and want respect, man or woman, black or white. It’s our basic human right. – Aretha Franklin

4. The love of my life? I’m much too young to answer that question. – Aretha Franklin

5. Women absolutely deserve respect. – Aretha Franklin

6. Everybody wants respect. In their own way, three-year-olds would like respect, and acknowledgment, in their terms. – Aretha Franklin

7. The man who gets me is getting one hell of a woman. – Aretha Franklin

8. I think women and children and older people are the three least-respected groups in our society. – Aretha Franklin

9. “It’s the rough side of the mountain that’s the easiest to climb; the smooth side doesn’t have anything for you to hang on to.” – Aretha Franklin

10. “It really is an honor if I can be inspirational to a younger singer or person. It means I’ve done my job.” – Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin quotes about music and life

11. Politics are not my arena. Music is. – Aretha Franklin

12. I’ve always felt that rock & roll was very, very wholesome. – Aretha Franklin

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13. I’ve been around long enough for people to know who I am and what my contributions are. They know me as more than just an artist. I think they know me as a woman as well. – Aretha Franklin

14. Music changes, and I’m gonna change right along with it. – Aretha Franklin

15. Music does a lot of things for a lot of people. It’s transporting, for sure. It can take you right back, years back, to the very moment certain things happened in your life. It’s uplifting, it’s encouraging, it’s strengthening. – Aretha Franklin

16. Being a singer is a natural gift. It means I’m using to the highest degree possible the gift that God gave me to use. I’m happy with that. – Aretha Franklin

17. Being the Queen is not all about singing and being a diva is not all about singing. It has much to do with your service to people. And your social contributions to your community and your civic contributions as well. – Aretha Franklin

18. We didn’t have music videos. You weren’t an overnight sensation. You had to work at it and learn your craft: how to take care of your voice, how to pace your concerts, all that trial and error. – Aretha Franklin

19. If a song’s about something I’ve experienced or that could’ve happened to me it’s good. But if it’s alien to me, I couldn’t lend anything to it. Because that’s what soul is all about. – Aretha Franklin

20. Soul is a constant. It’s cultural. It’s always going to be there, in different flavors and degrees.- Aretha Franklin

Don’t forget to also read these Stevie Wonder quotes from the iconic soul artist.

Aretha Franklin quotes to inspire confidence

21. “Be your own artist, and always be confident in what you’re doing. If you’re not going to be confident, you might as well not be doing it.” – Aretha Franklin

22. “Who hasn’t had a weight issue? If not the body, certainly the big head!” – Aretha Franklin

23. “Don’t say Aretha is making a comeback, because I’ve never been away!” – Aretha Franklin

24. “It’s very satisfying. To perform the way you want to. And the way you know that you can.” – Aretha Franklin

25. “Trying to grow up is hurting. You make mistakes. You try to learn from them, and when you don’t, it hurts even more.” – Aretha Franklin

26. “Women have broken through the glass ceiling, and they’re now more and more in the power seats.” – Aretha Franklin

27. “Let your life be in the sunshine

Not the darkness of your sorrow

You may see your all today

When you know it’ll come tomorrow.” – Aretha Franklin

28. “I’m a big woman. I need big hair.” — Aretha Franklin

29. “The milk of kindness flows through my body, I shall follow Jesus to the Taco Bell and give thanks.” — Aretha Franklin

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30. “I’m the lady next door when I’m not on stage.” – Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin quotes to inspire happiness and success

31. “Be your own artist and always be confident in what you’re doing. If you’re not going to be confident, you might as well not be doing it.” – Aretha Franklin

32. “Sometimes, what you’re looking for is already there.” – Aretha Franklin

33. “People really don’t have to give you anything, so appreciate what people give you.” – Aretha Franklin

34. “As women, we do have it. We have the power. We are very resourceful.” – Aretha Franklin

35. “52 years of recording for other people. I thought at this point, it’s time for you to record for yourself. So that way there wouldn’t be so many spoons in the soup. There would just be one Aretha spoon in the soup.” – Aretha Franklin

36. “I’ve never recorded anything I didn’t like.” – Aretha Franklin

37. “Let’s start with the church. As you know, it’s my background, it’s a natural setting for me and it’s definitely my roots.” – Aretha Franklin

38. “Yes, I’ve always been fashion-conscious.” – Aretha Franklin

39. “My generation, we came along, we had to really know our craft.” – Aretha Franklin

40. “Men have always been gentlemen to me – responsible people with healthy attitudes.” – Aretha Franklin

You might also like these soulful Nina Simone quotes to put you under her spell

More Aretha Franklin quotes

41. “Every birthday is a gift. Every day is a gift.” – Aretha Franklin

42. “If you disrespect everybody that you run into, how in the world do you think everybody’s supposed to respect you?” – Aretha Franklin

43. My faith always has been and always will be important to me. – Aretha Franklin

44. “Better friends than lovers. Sugar can’t you see? You need you and I really need me.” — Aretha Franklin

45. “I don’t feel one’s personal medical condition is everybody’s business. It just isn’t something you advertise, and it’s not open to discussion.” — Aretha Franklin

46. “I donate heavily to the church and various churches in the Detroit community and food banks.” — Aretha Franklin

47. It’s hard. When you love food, and when you’ve done a high-energy concert, you know, a carrot is not gonna work. – Aretha Franklin

48. “You’re a no-good heartbreaker, you’re a liar, and you’re a cheat. I don’t know why I let you do these things to me.” — Aretha Franklin

49. R-E-S-P-E-C-T, find out what it means to me. – Aretha Franklin

50. I don’t do crazy things – I just don’t. – Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin quotes about her life, opinions, and career

51. “When God loves you, what can be better than that?” — Aretha Franklin

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52. “I’m really an old-fashioned girl—I like to be romanced.” — Aretha Franklin

53. “We’ve come a long way, but there is still a lot of discrimination.” — Aretha Franklin

54. “I think it would be a far greater world if people were kinder and more respectful to each other.” — Aretha Franklin

55. “In terms of helping people understand and know each other a little better, music is universal – universal and transporting.” — Aretha Franklin

56. “I am doing what I love to do, and you cannot beat that, especially when the audience appreciates what you prepare for them. It’s very, very gratifying.” — Aretha Franklin

57. “My mentor was Clara Ward of the famous Ward gospel singers of Philadelphia. And my dad was my coach. He coached me. And just my natural love for music is what drove me.” — Aretha Franklin

58. “You cannot define a person on just one thing. You can’t just forget all these wonderful and good things that a person has done because one thing didn’t come off the way you thought it should come off.” — Aretha Franklin

59. “My upbringing was in the church. We had to attend regularly. And, of course, the church provided a training ground for me, so to speak, as a young vocalist and certainly gave me all of the spiritual values that I needed as a young lady.” — Aretha Franklin

60. “Sam Cooke had a huge influence on me. He left the gospel field at one point and went into the secular, and he had this huge hit, ‘You Send Me.’ Irma, my older sister, and I heard ‘You Send Me’ on the radio while we were driving through the South one night. We had to stop the car. We got out and danced around the car out on the highway.” — Aretha Franklin

Be sure and check out these Beyoncé quotes from another queen!

Which are your favorite Aretha Franklin quotes?

Aretha Franklin will be remembered as one of the greatest singers of all time. She became the first woman ever to be inducted in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and received many other accolades, including 18 Grammy Awards.

Though she came from a humble background, Franklin used her musical talent to leave an indelible mark on the world. We can all learn a thing or two from her life story and her empowering music.

Hopefully, these quotes from the Queen of Soul have inspired you to fight for your dreams and live your best life.

Did you enjoy these Aretha Franklin quotes? Which of the quotes was your favorite? Tell us in the comment section below. We would love to hear all about it. 

Norbert Juma, Lead Editor
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  1. Brianna

    February 24, 2021 at 12:29 PM

    I really love these quotes they are very inspiring.

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