Legendary Philadelphia International Records co-founders and R&B pioneers Kenneth Gamble & Leon Huff released the following statement mourning the passing of the undisputed Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin:
“We not only admire Aretha Franklin for her singing ability, but we appreciate what she did to uplift the community. We have always been honored and elated — and are still on ‘Cloud Nine’ – for having her cover two of our songs: ‘A Brand New Me’ and ‘Christmas Just Ain’t Christmas without the One You Love.’ While we never got the opportunity to work directly with Aretha, she was our dear friend.
“We send our deepest and sincere condolences out to her family. She was truly the best!”