Ain’t No Way

28 Dec

I hadn’t thought of Aretha (need I use her surname?) for some time when I chanced to see that silly candy bar commercial where the notion of diva is bandied about— I think the message is that eating this confection in some way returns the consumer to a state of normalcy.

Then as such things happen Bob Herbert wrote a bittersweet appreciation of the soulful songstress which brought back vivid memories of stirring times long past. Also, he imparted the news that Aretha was “recovering nicely” from a surgery related to her pancreatic cancer. Sad news indeed.

But still, to be reminded of her glorious songbook and the voice Rolling Stone wrote was a “gift from God” was powerfully moving and I suspect ever so. Herbert quotes music lover and scribe Peter Guralnick, “Aretha staked out a claim for the ecstatic transcendence of the imagination.” Whatever that means it sounds true enough.

Watch Aretha perform this signature song Ain’t No Way, written by her sister Carolyn. “Ecstatic transcendence” starts to make sense…

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