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Posted under: News Culture

Aretha Franklin's Granddaughter Beautifully Sang 'Ain't No Way' For 'American Idol' Audition

Grace Franklin even confirmed the age-old rumor that Aretha kept her purse beside her at all times, keeping her money safe in her possession.

Aretha Franklin's granddaughter, Grace Franklin, is following in her legendary grandmother's footsteps by pursuing a singing career of her own. The "Respect" artist's relative made her official singing debut by appearing on a recent episode of American Idol in front of judges Katy Perry, Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan.

"Stop right there. That is your grandma?" Richie said, according to People. 


He continued, speaking highly about his friendship with the 15-year-old's grandmother, revealing he still has some of the voicemails she left him. The "Queen of Soul" died of pancreatic cancer in 2018 at the age of 76.

After Grace performed her rendition of Aretha's "Ain't No Way" and Lauryn Hill's "Killing Me Softly," she, unfortunately, received some disappointing results. Richie and Bryan delivered a no, but she received one yes from Perry. Richie left Grace with some advice, however.

"Grace Franklin, I love you and I think the best thing for you in life is to take a shot at going backwards. Go back and get a running start and come at this again," he said.

Perry pushed her fellow judges to "give her a shot."

"Give her a chance. I am sure Aretha wasn't Aretha when she walked in the room, but somebody said, 'Yes, I want to work with you. I want to develop you. You got something,'" she said.

But Richie didn't budge on his decision, telling her again to "go back and put the shyness behind you and the voice in front of you, you are going to be something amazing."


Grace opened up about her familial ties to the late great star on Sunday's episode, noting that while the world was in awe of her as the incomparable soulful songstress, she knew her as simply her grandmother.

"I don't think I could fully grasp the fact that she was famous worldwide," Grace shared. "Because to me she was always grandma ... I was really close to my grandma. I got to see her all the time. I got to travel with her a lot."

Despite following in her grandmother's footsteps, Grace shared that she has her own style of singing. 

"I feel like people expect me to sing exactly like her, but I am my own artist and I have my own voice," she said.

During the audition, she also confirmed the age-old rumor that Aretha kept her purse beside her at all times, keeping her money safe in her possession. 


Grace shared her audition experience on her Instagram page, telling her followers that she was "extremely proud of herself" for going on the show, even if she didn't get her desired outcome.

"i really wanted to use this opportunity to test out my abilities and see how far i could go, and i’m honestly extremely proud of myself," she said. "Even though i didn’t make it through, i had a really amazing time! the amount of knowledge i gained and amazing artists i met will truly stick with me for a very long time. i’m excited to use this experience to help me move forward in the future!"

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