As if we didn't already love and respect Ariana Grande, we shed a tear alongside the 25-year-old pop-powerhouse during her moving tribute to the beloved Aretha Franklin. RIP Queen of Soul.
The singer opened Thursday's episode of "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" by paying tribute to Franklin, who died Thursday at her home in Detroit at the age of 76. Franklin's family issued a statement Thursday saying that official cause of death was due to advanced pancreatic cancer.
According to TMZ, Grande was supposed to only do a comedy skit and not sing during her previously scheduled appearance on the show. However, when the singer arrived on set, producers asked her if she would perform an Aretha song in honour of the late singer.
TMZ said that initially Ariana told them she couldn't do it because she was too emotional in the wake of Franklin's death.
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She evidently changed her mind because Grande's tribute brought the house down and got a standing O. The Roots backed Grande's faithful rendition of Aretha Franklin's "(You Make Me Feel Like) a Natural Woman," the late singer's hit 1967 single.
Later in the show, Grande recalled meeting the O.G. powerhouse during a performance at the White House. The "No Tears Left to Cry" singer described the late artist as "so sweet."
"I met her a few times. We sang at the White House and she was so sweet and she was like so cute and I was like, 'How are you a real person?' It's an honour to have met her," Grande said. "She called me one time, it was one time only, and she goes, 'Hi, it's Aretha.' I'm like, 'Franklin?'
We love this young singer and her tribute to a legend.