Lansing, Mich. - Soulful, loving, cool and kind.
Those are the words Grammy-nominated singer Betty Joplin used to describe Aretha Franklin.
“She was just a great lady,” Joplin recalled.
“I don't know what else to say. You almost get overwhelmed thinking about how fantastic she really was. Just fabulous, you know.”
Joplin said she met Franklin back in the 1980s when she was invited to sing for the Queen of Soul at a tribute concert in Detroit.
“I was just beyond thrilled,” said the jazz singer.
“I had been admiring her all my life, you know she was like, she was just my idol.”
As Betty Joplin reflects, she recalls the shock she felt when Franklin invited her to perform at a private dinner party at her home in Detroit.
“Once you go to one of her parties, you know, it's over. I mean, there is none like them,” Joplin explained.
“When I look back on it, I say my God those were some of the best, just the best days and fun you know that I had as far as a career is concerned to be involved with Aretha. That was just beautiful.”
Joplin said Franklin continued to call her to entertain guests throughout the years.
“She was just very cool, but she had a big heart”, Joplin said.
“That woman, there will never be another Aretha Franklin and that's for sure. Never.”