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Aretha Franklin: The Queen of Soul Hardcover – 30 Mar 1990
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About the Author
Mark Bego is the best-selling biographer of pop and rock stars. He is the author of 50 published books and has taped an episode of A&E-TV's "Biography," discussing his book, Aretha Franklin: Queen of Soul . Mr. Bego's is also the author of Billy Joel: The Biography . He divides his time between New York City, Los Angeles, and Tucson, Arizona. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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I, too, hailed the Queen after her riveting performance of "Nessum Dorma" on the 1998 Grammys and I continue to follow her career in hopes that her legacy continues to be upheld with the upmost respect. I hope that in twenty years, the author can add another update of amazing accomplishments to this edition. Good read.
Nevertheless, Mr. Bego's portrait of Ms. Franklin reveals an enormously talented, engaging musician who is nonetheless sad, sloppy and undisciplined in almost every other area of her life. Bego provides salacious details and commentary about her relatively well-off but tragic childhood (her father was notorious and wealthy, a street-wise and worldly preacher man who financed her first forays into secular music, but her mother abandoned the family and died before Ms. Franklin was 10); her shocking, early-teen motherhood (she gave birth to her first child at age 13 and had two more children before she was 18!); her legendary weight problems; her serial romantic failures and her failure to promptly pay creditors. Mr. Bego's book is probably the best we can do for now, since Ms. Franklin has categorically refused to divulge anything of substance about her life (and has obviously admonished others close to her to do the same). It will probably be a while before a much more accomplished writer comes along to do what cannot be done in Ms. Franklin's lifetime: give a fully balanced and well-written account of her life and times.