Aretha Franklin recorded her 28th album Jump To It in 1981 and it was released in 1982. Luther Vandross fulfilled a lifelong dream when he was given the job of exclusively producing a project for one of his musical idols. Miller and Vandross wrote the title song which was about Franklin ready to move when her lover calls. Miller played the bass and Vandross sang backup on the song that also had Nat Adderley Jr., Fonzi Thornton, Cissy Houston and Tawatha Agee among its personnel. “Jump To It” was a hit heard everywhere in the summer of 1982 including radio, cookouts, clubs, roller rinks and car radios because it was so catchy. Franklin was brilliant and coolly added a sophisticated jazz scat into the plush tones of her standard-bearing soulful delivery. She had a comeback with “Jump To It” because it was her first Gold-certified record and pop hit since 1976. It was the beginning of Franklin’s successes in the ’80s which included pop and gospel recordings that kept her on the charts. Jump To It, the album, earned an American Music Award for Best Soul Album in 1983.
Franklin passed in 2018 after an almost six-decade career. As the Queen of Soul, she helped to create the genre and showed the world how blues, gospel and pop could be used to take the ebbs and flows of life to create beautiful songs that will connect with people forever. In 2021, National Geographic aired the eight-part series Genius: Aretha about Franklin’s life. The motion picture RESPECT starring Jennifer Hudson as Franklin is expected to be in theaters also in 2021.