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Aretha Franklin Taps R. Kelly for 38th Album

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After successfully overcoming an undisclosed ailment, Aretha Franklin is ready to pick up where she left off. The Queen of Soul is gearing up to release her 38th studio album ‘Aretha: Woman Falling out of Love’ on May 3, with eccentric songwriter R. Kelly tapped to lend his songwriting abilities to the new LP.

The album, which will be released independently through Franklin’s own imprint Aretha Records, will be exclusively sold at Walmart stores. The iconic performer has been recording ‘Aretha’ since 2006, and has collaborated with Faith Hill, BeBe Winans, Gordon Chambers, Karen Clark-Sheard and Richard Marx for the project.

“It’s definitely going to take the boomers back … but it’s also contemporary with respect to other writers and production,’ she told the Associated Press.

Franklin is also sporting a new look following a noticeable weight loss since going for surgery in December, focusing on a healthy new lifestyle. “I want to not only maintain the weight I am at now, but better it, by one dress size,” she said. “You have to just maintain good health from here.”

Though she was unable to attend, Franklin was tributed at the 53rd Grammy Awards earlier this month by Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Hudson, Yolanda Adams, Florence Welch and Martina McBride. She recently made an appearance at a Detroit Pistons game, and plans to increase her public appearances leading up to her album’s release.

Watch Aretha Franklin’s ‘Everyday People’
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