Maren Morris Gives Powerful Aretha Franklin Tribute [Watch]
The music world was jarred when Aretha Franklin—the Queen of Soul—died at the age of 76 on Thursday (Aug. 16). Many artists playing live over the weekend chose to honor her with a cover of one of her most-loved hits, including Maren Morris, who selected 1967's "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" for her Las Vegas date on Saturday (Aug 18).
Morris' smoky vocals proved to be a perfect match for the soulful classic, and could almost stand up to the original itself in terms of depth and emotion. Morris' bass player, Annie Clements, posted a video of the performance on social media (which Morris re-grammed on her own account), noting the reverence present behind the cover.
"This song is written on the souls of millions, something I realized in the short time we had at sound check the other day to work it up in Aretha’s honor," she wrote. "It was effortless; it’s in our bones, ready to emerge at a moment’s notice. Every nuance of Aretha’s version is imprinted. It lives in us the way great music does. Immortal. Hope you hear all these souls lifting their voices to you in heaven Aretha, and know that your spirit is in our bones here on earth."
As for Morris herself, she simply noted, "All hail the Queen. Loved singing this this weekend."
The song has proved a popular cover choice for female vocalists to tackle over the years; in the country genre, Jo Dee Messina and Shania Twain have notably tested their mettle on its sultry, evocative melody—the latter actually with Franklin herself, along with several other vocal icons.
In Memory: Aretha Franklin, Year by Year: