Owen Sweeney/Invision/AP, File

Civil rights figure Rev Jesse Jackson visits ailing Aretha Franklin

The civil rights activist and Baptist minister Rev Jesse Jackson has visited an ailing Aretha Franklin at her home in Detroit.

Franklin's publicist Gwendolyn Quinn told The Associated Press that Stevie Wonder and Franklin's ex-husband, actor Glynn Turman, also visited the Queen of Soul, who is seriously ill.

A person close to Franklin, who started her career by singing in a church gospel choir, told the AP on Monday that the singer is ill. No more details were provided.


Earlier this week, the entertainment website Showbiz 411 reported the Franklin's friends and family were "asking for prayers and privacy".

Franklin, who is the daughter of a Baptist minister, cancelled planned concerts earlier this year after she was ordered by her doctor to stay off the road and rest up.

The 76-year-old announced plans to retire last year, saying she would perform at "some select things".


Fans, friends and musicians influenced by Franklin offered positive words to the iconic singer when news broke that she was ill, including Rod Stewart, Mariah Carey, Chaka Khan, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Tyler Perry, Missy Elliott and Wayne Brady.

At her concert in Detroit on Monday night with Jay-Z, Beyonce thanked Franklin for her "beautiful music" and said "we love you".

Former US President Bill Clinton tweeted that he and Hillary Clinton "are thinking about Aretha Franklin tonight & listening to her music that has been such an important part of our lives the last 50 years".



"We hope you'll lift her up by listening and sharing her songs that have meant the most to you," Mr Clinton wrote.

In an interview with the AP on Monday, Emmy-winning actor Sterling K Brown said: "May I wish the Queen of Soul all the best."

"Your music has moved and inspired a generation," he added, "so my prayers are with you. Wishing you all the best, queen."


Actress and singer Mandy Moore, who stars in This Is Us with Brown, said Franklin has "the most incredible legacy".

"Who is not a fan? I don't think there is anyone that Aretha Franklin's music has not touched or influenced in one way or another," she told the AP. "She's the best of the best."

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