The Queen of Soul’s Vibrant Court

Our thoughts are with Aretha, and all of the talents she's inspired.

By Kai Wright Dec 09, 2010

The sad news about Aretha Franklin’s health has me down, but I’m glad we chose this week to highlight some of the artists who are keeping soul alive in American music. Check out Jamilah King’s celebration of five of her favorite artists with new albums this year. As she writes,

It’s notoriously difficult to define exactly what "soul" means, and even harder to pin down exactly what a soul singer looks, sounds or acts like. But what’s certain is that for the better part of the past 40 years, it’s infused virtually every popular genre of American music. And these days, it’s enjoying a renaissance as both familiar and new artists break into the popular culture.