Aretha Franklin Tribute Takes AMAs Audience to Church

Gladys Knight performed during the Aretha Franklin Tribute on Oct. 9, 2018, at American Music Awards. (Credit: ABC)

The American Music Awards gave viewers a sample of a Sunday morning church service with a soul-stirring tribute to the late Aretha Franklin.

The all-star medley featured Gladys Knight, Ledisi, Mary Mary, Donnie McClurkin and CeCe Winans belting out songs from Franklin’s iconic 1972 gospel album, Amazing Grace.

As she stood between two large pictures of Franklin, Knight began the tribute inside the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles with the Christian hymn, Amazing Grace.

The 74-year-old singer brought audience members to their feet, and some could be seen on television with tears in their eyes.

The tribute was guided by musical director Rickey Minor. Fans at home approved, with many tweeting comments describing the remembrance as “beautiful” and “worth staying up for.”

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Franklin died at her home in Detroit from pancreatic cancer on August 16.

Over her lifetime, the 76-year-old singer, songwriter and civil rights activist won a string of music honors including six AMAs and 18 Grammy Awards.

Before she was laid to rest, friends and family members remembered the music legend at a star-studded funeral service in Detroit.

Knight, a longtime friend of Franklin’s, also performed at the Detroit homegoing.