!n 1967 Aretha Franklin returned to the top of the charts with a new studio album entitled “Aretha Arrives”, released on 4th August 1967 by Atlantic Records. The album peaked at  number one on 9th September 1967 (5 weeks). “Baby I Love You” was the only gold single to be released from the album.

During 1967 Aretha had a total of four gold singles from three different studio albums on Atlantic Records, with all the singles going to number one on the Billboard Hot Soul and R&B Singles Chart in North America. These gold singles were : “I Never Loved A Man The Way I Love You”, “Respect”, “Baby I Love You” and “Chain of Fools”. Between February and August 1967, she sold in excess of 3.5 million copies, including singles and albums.

On the Billboard Hot Soul Albums Chart from 1967 to 1969, Franklin had five number-one studio albums, with three of them receiving gold certification for over half a million units sold according to the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America).

All five studio albums released by Atlantic Records featured members of the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section, King Curtis and Sweet Inspirations. The Album “Lady Soul” featured Eric Clapton playing guitar on the track “Good to Me As I Am to You”. The 1968 album “Aretha Now” featured the Memphis Horns Section who played on many classic hit recordings for Stax Records and Hi Records in Memphis.

All of these albums were recorded at Atlantic Records recording studios in New York city, but with a Southern Soul sound because many of studio session musicians were from the South. That gave her recordings a raw and refined soulful signature sound.

The five studio albums spent a total of 59 weeks at number one on the Billboard Hot Soul Albums Chart over the two year period of their release.

During her career as a recording artist, Aretha has won a total of 18 Grammy Awards. She is one of the best-selling female artists of all time, having generated over 75 million sales of singles and albums globally.


The first gold album

Franklin was also the first female artist to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987, twenty years after her first gold album on Atlantic Records.

Photo:  The birthplace of Aretha Franklin on Lucy Street in Memphis, Tennessee.

WillyBearden   2014   (Wikimedia Commons)