From Danny Bakewell Sr., publisher of the Los Angeles Sentinel Newspaper:
“Aretha Franklin was a friend. We honored her one year at the Brotherhood Crusade, we had phenomenal artists on that show. We had Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder, just a plethora of entertainers that came out to pay tribute to her. ”
“Not only was she a singer and an absolute American treasure, she was a fine human being. I got a call from Aretha about a month ago out of the blue, she said ‘Danny this is Aretha, I just wanted to talk to you. I saw you on TV talking about what the Brotherhood Crusade is doing and I wanted to find out the name of the program that you were talking about.’ Unfortunately we exchanged calls and were not able to talk again. It was very endearing just to know she had called and had the Brotherhood on her heart. ”
During the Civil Rights era, you never went to a rally where you didn’t play Respect or Think. Her music would put in perspective the struggle we were enduring. Her music inspired us, those of us who were engaging in Civil Rights; we could always look to her to be very concerned, just like the call I got.
“I think her music will stay alive forever.”