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Aretha Franklin

Calls in Sick to Whitney's Funeral

But Performs Hours Later

2/19/2012 7:20 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Aretha Franklin canceled her scheduled appearance at the Whitney Houston funeral service.
Aretha Franklin canceled her scheduled appearance at Whitney Houston's funeral service in New Jersey yesterday afternoon ... but was well enough to perform at Radio City Music Hall that night.

Aretha said she had been suffering from leg spasms and wanted to rest up for her show, rather than travel for the funeral. She released a statement, saying in part, "heart goes out to my dear friend Cissy, Dionne, Bobbi Kristina and the rest of the family. May God keep them all."

The Queen of Soul dedicated a portion of her show to Whitney, and also to Nick Ashford, who passed away last August. 


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She should have shown some R-E-S-P-E-C-T...

791 days ago


The show must go on. Aretha's fans who are ALIVE and paid money for tickets and to make travel arrangements deserve her appearance more.

791 days ago


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791 days ago


Aretha is like 70 years old. She would have had to fly out to Jersey and then hurry up and fly to the show. She would have been tired and not gave her best performance for paying fans. I understand why she did it but I don't think it was right. I feel that since she told Cissy and Dionne that she would be there then she should have canceled the show over a week ago. Bad planning on her part.

791 days ago


I am very proud of Aretha Franklin for the integrity she demonstrates by not attending. She can forgive, but can't forget. Quite frankly, I don't think the Houstons ever did right by her... and I'll leave it at that.


791 days ago


OMG on Google Maps it says that New York is 22 minutes away for Newark, NJ. I love Aretha Franklin but that was pretty messed up. All she had to do was drive over there sing at the funeral pay her respects and bounce. She would have had plenty of time to rest. That was very lazy of her...sad....

791 days ago


Aretha made the wrong call by choosing her concert performance over attending Whitney Houston's funeral. Leg spasms? She probably wanted to "save" her voice because she couldn't sing twice in one day. It's not like she missed a birthday party--this was a final, once-in-a-lifetime event to pay tribute to someone beloved in her life who considered her a "godmother" & was unexpectedly gone too soon. If she did have leg spasms, she should have gotten in a limo for the 20-minute ride to Newark, NJ and used a wheelchair, if necessary, to assist her. I find Aretha's behavior shameful and heartless.

791 days ago

Markus Booker    

Aretha should have taken her fat ass to Whitney E. Houston's funeral.:-(

791 days ago


I have been in love with Aretha's voice for years. I just know i'm her biggest fan ever.
Her decision to stay home and take care of herself was a good call, she is'nt getting any younger. Whitney was a great singer, but still...only human..why should Aretha take chances with her health issues.

791 days ago


i NEVER judge ppl when it comes to funeral attendance. everyone deals w these things differently. as an adolescent, i refused to go to funerals. i felt that they were morbid and designed to make you dwell on the loss of death, rather than the gift that that person's life was to you. as i've grown, my views have changed, slightly. but, i still won't fault someone for choosing to skip a funeral. whitney wasn't there. she was in aretha's heart, and in the hearts of all of her loved ones as well. ...and who knows. maybe this was a gig aretha couldn't skip. maybe she's flat broke, and can't afford to pass up a chance to make some cash. these celebs all live far beyond their means...and if the cash isn't comin in, they sink to the bottom pretty quickly.

791 days ago


R.E.S.P.E.C.T. ... Aretha showed no respect to her godchild. All these people care about is $$$$. Your time will com and let's see who shows up to pay you respect. I think I might have "leg spasms" too. God bless you for poor decisions...

791 days ago

Jessica Schlachter    

you all need to understand that Aretha Franklin has a lot of health issues herself. If she agreed to sing at Radio City Musica Hall, then she has to honor that contract or possibly pay for all those tickets sold for her to sing. You trolls need to shut up

791 days ago


What a bitch..Some friend and Godmother she turned out to be...hope your family and friends do the same for you...

791 days ago

stacey searcy    

It doesnt appear she cared that much for Whitney. If she did come hell, highwater, or a concert would not have kept her from the funeral. I would bet if the truth be know Aretha was actually envious of Whitney's fame and voice. By her not going to the funeral reveals alot about Aretha's character

791 days ago


For some one who sang about respect she didnt show much for Whitney. obviously at nearly 70 yrs old money ment more to her. Have lost all respect for this woman...

791 days ago
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