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Rolling Stone: Aretha Franklin Documentary ‘Amazing Grace’ Amplifies the Power of a Gospel Classic

Rolling Stone writes that Amazing Grace, the new Aretha Franklin documentary filmed in 1972 by Sydney Pollack, “is a marvelous 87-minute testament to Franklin’s unrivaled singing ability” with sequences “that make the Amazing Grace documentary an indispensable visual companion to the album. The movie adds a remarkable amount of oomph to what is already among the most viscerally affecting releases in Franklin’s extensive discography — having seen the singer reduce the barrel-chested Cleveland to tears, you can’t help but hear the music differently.”

Read more at Rolling Stone.

Aretha Franklin, Bill Clinton, Alec Baldwin Light Up Elton John AIDS Foundation Gala

Elton John rarely does anything by half, and the 25th annual gala for the AIDS Foundation that bears his name was certainly no exception. While the event, held at New York’s majestic Cathedral of St. John the Divine, featured a monumentally star-studded guest list, speeches from former President Bill Clinton, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, Alec Baldwin, host Neil Patrick Harris and John himself, and was capped by an intimate performance from none other than Aretha Franklin, its most memorable moment came from the mother of Ryan White, the teenager whose death in 1990 led directly to the creation of the foundation. The event raised more than $4.3 million.

Read more at Variety.