3 of the Most Soul-Touching Aretha Franklin Covers

Aretha Franklin can take any song and make it a soul-touching experience. From covers of rock classics to folk standards, find three stellar Franklin covers, below.

Videos by American Songwriter

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1. “Bridge Over Troubled Water”

Franklin turns Simon and Garfunkel’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water” into something befitting a church service. Instead of a message from one friend to another, this song becomes a universal promise from some higher power.

Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

2. “The Weight”

Franklin somehow adds even more magic to “The Weight.” The Band‘s original version is powerful in its own right, but Franklin’s vocals somehow make it even more impactful. Franklin lets her vocals fly freely. Her voice soars to the highest highs and somehow settles into the soul of the listener.

I pulled in to Nazareth
Was feeling ’bout half past dead
I just need someplace
Where I can lay my head
“Hey, mister, can you tell me
Where a man might find a bed?”
He just grinned and shook my hand
“No” was all he said

3. “Let It Be”

This Paul McCartney-penned track has been covered by countless artists–perhaps the true mark of a timeless song. In our opinion, Franklin’s rendition comes in second, close behind the Beatles’ original version. The soulful undertones of that track are brought to the forefront by Franklin.

When I find myself in times of trouble, Mother Mary comes to me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be
And in my hour of darkness she is standing right in front of me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be

[RELATED: Paul McCartney Pays Tribute to Late Friend & Pioneering UK Radio DJ Annie Nightingale: “The Music World Will Be Poorer Without Her”]

(Photo by David Redfern/Redferns)

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