CBS News August 17, 2018, 1:19 PM Jon Batiste on Aretha Franklin: "There's a master class in every song that she's recorded"
Tributes are pouring in from around the world to music legend Aretha Franklin, who died Thursday at the age of 76. Jon Batiste, bandleader for "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert" dedicated Thursday night's "Late Show" playlist to the "Queen of Soul."
"Oh, my goodness. The soul quotient of the world is much lower today," Batiste said Friday on "CBS This Morning." He played at Franklin's birthday party five years ago.
Batiste said Franklin, who died at her home in Detroit after a long battle with cancer, was born into a musical lineage and "cultural epicenter."
"You had C. L. Franklin, her father, who has Duke Ellington, Dinah Washington, Sam Cooke, Martin Luther King Jr., all coming by the house, and she's a baby, and they're trading stories with her. She's feeling their frequency and their vibration and they're teaching her about music," Batiste said.
She encompassed soul as a musician who "synthesized everything that come before," Batiste added.
"You have the blues, negro spirituals, gospel, jazz, doo-wop, all these sounds. And it was the first time that – I call them our ancestral sounds. They're the sounds of the American way of life," he said. "But somehow, she made it global. It was the first time you had seen something like this, and for a black woman to come out and really share that sound with the rest of the world is amazing. It's a visionary thing that you can't really explain how it happened, but when you hear it, you're like, 'Oh, that's us.' You be in Japan, 'That's us.' You be in Memphis, 'That's us.' It's universal. It's magic."
Batiste said there is still a lot to learn from in how Franklin used her voice, rhythm, and the piano in her musicianship.
"There's a master class in every song that she's recorded. We just have to continue to study and really absorb the music that she's left here. It'll be here for hundreds of years to come," Batiste said.
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