Aretha Franklin Will Return to the Stage and Release New Album

In May, singer to perform first concert since recovering from a mystery ailment

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Aretha Franklin has announced her first show since canceling a run of concerts last year due to illness. The singer, who is still recovering from surgery she had in December, is set to perform at the Seneca Niagara Casino in Buffalo, New York on May 28th. (Gossip blogger Perez Hilton says that her actual first concert will be at Radio City Music Hall earlier in May, but that has yet to be confirmed.)

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Franklin will also release a new album, Aretha: A Woman Falling Out of Love, on May 3rd through WalMart. The record, which has been in the works for many years and will be issued by her own label Aretha's Records, will include collaborations with R. Kelly and Billy Dee Williams.

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In an interview with the Associated Press, Franklin said that one positive effect of her illness has been that she has lost weight. She said that she has been working hard to maintain the loss by regularly working out and eating a healthier diet.

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Franklin's most recent public appearance was  on the Grammy Awards on Sunday. In a pre-taped clip, she thanked fans for supporting her during her illness following an all-star tribute to her music featuring Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Hudson, Martina McBride, Florence Welch and Yolanda Adams.