Ariana Grande Breaks Down After Performing Aretha Franklin Tribute

By Lauren Crawford

August 17, 2018

Ariana Grande was able to honor one of her heroes, the late, great Aretha Franklin, on the Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Falon Thursday (August 16). 

Hours after news of the Queen of Soul's passing, the "No Tears Left To Cry Singer" powered through a touching tribute of one of Aretha's biggest hits, "Natural Woman." While Ariana was able to control her emotions, shedding only a single tear while performing, TMZ reports the singer broke down in tears after leaving the stage. 

According to the site, Ariana, who was scheduled to appear on the Tonight Show to promote her new album Sweetener, was originally slated to do a single comedy skit. However, after news of Aretha's death producers asked the "God is a Woman" singer to perform an Aretha song in her honor. While Ariana initially declined the request, reportedly saying she was just too emotional following Aretha's passing, she is said to have been convinced after Questlove asked her to perform an Aretha song with The Roots

Aretha passed away on Thursday (August 16) at her home in Detroit “due to advance pancreatic cancer of the neuroendocrine type.”

"In one of the darkest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our heart," her family said in a statement. "We have lost the matriarch and rock of our family. The love she had for her children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and cousins knew no bounds." 

The statement continued, "We have been deeply touched by the incredible outpouring of love and support we have received from close friends, supporters and fans all around the world. Thank you for your compassion and prayers. We have felt your love for Aretha and it brings us comfort to know that her legacy will live on. As we grieve, we ask that you respect our privacy during this difficult time."

Remember the Queen of Soul and her legacy by listening to iHeartRadio's tribute on the Classic Soul station:

Photo: Getty Images

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