Smokey Robinson Aretha Franklin

When Aretha Franklin was inducted into the second class of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1987, she had a familiar face by her side: fellow inductee and lifelong friend Smokey Robinson.

It was rather symbolic that the two kids from Detroit, who grew up playing games in the neighborhood together, had both made their way to the top of such a tough industry. She had sung her way to the top of the charts with her powerful voice and messages on songs like “Respect” and “(You Make Me Feel Like) a Natural Woman” in the late 1960s and 70s, earning her the nickname Queen of Soul. Meanwhile, he had become the King of Motown by forming the group The Miracles, which cranked out 37 Top 40 hit songs.

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