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Producer brings stars out for Franklin

Feb. 7, 2008 at 2:11 PM   |   Comments

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NEW YORK, Feb. 7 (UPI) -- Record producer Phil Ramone says this weekend's MusicCares tribute to Aretha Franklin in Los Angeles will give props to the Queen of Soul's celebrated career.

"We're just getting artists who are going to perform songs she made famous and songs that represent how music is in her life, because it's vast," said the Grammy-winning producer, who's helming Friday's 2008 MusicCares Person of the Year show, which honors Franklin for her philanthropic endeavors in her home town of Detroit.

The star-studded affair will feature performances by Faith Hill, Fantasia, John Legend, Herbie Hancock, Shirley Caesar, the Blues Brothers and more. Bill Cosby and Motown founder Berry Gordy Jr. will be among the speakers paying tribute to Franklin, who is up for a Grammy Award Sunday for a duet with Mary J. Blige from the film "Bobby."

The show will be taped for broadcast on PBS.

"You get a lot of great artists you wouldn't think would show up but they all will," Ramone said. "And (Franklin) will do two or three songs to reply to them. It'll make a good TV show."

In addition to publishing a recent memoir, "Making Records: The Scenes Behind the Music," Ramone is co-producing a musical celebration of Liverpool, England, that will take place later this year.

© 2008 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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