Aretha Franklin Honors Prince With “Purple Rain” Cover

At the White House.

Aretha Franklin Honors Prince With “Purple Rain” Cover Cindy Ord / Getty Images

“My original idea for my next segment was to link two of my passions, jazz and hip-hop,” Herbie Hancock announced during a recent performance at the White House in honor of International Jazz Day. “These improvisational art forms changed the course of music history and continue to impact culture around the world."

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But recent events caused him to change the agenda. "Last week, we lost a legend," Hancock explained. "An icon. The son of a jazz pianist whose music inspired a new generation of artists to create without boundaries. Courageous, playful, wise, brilliant, and a feast for the eyes and the ears, Prince epitomized the word music. Tonight we celebrate his incredible virtuosity and pay tribute to [a] legacy that spans every musical genre."

Robert Glasper, Terrace Martin, and more joined Hancock to work through Prince classics like “1999” and “When Doves Cry.” Around the 1:14 mark, Aretha Franklin emerges to sing a few bars of “Purple Rain.” Watch here.

May 02, 2016
Aretha Franklin Honors Prince With “Purple Rain” Cover