Aretha Franklin led an all-star tribute to Clive Davis following the premiere of a new documentary about the music mogul, Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives, at the Tribeca Film Festival Wednesday. The concert at Radio City Music Hall also featured performances from Jennifer Hudson, Earth Wind & Fire, Barry Manilow, Carly Simon and Dionne Warwick.
Franklin spoke briefly about her long working relationship with Davis, saying, “What a wonderful, caring, caring humanitarian. He’s not only the chieftain who sits in the executive office and takes care of all the business; he takes care of his artists as well.” The soul legend then launched into a chilling rendition of “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” closing the Carol King and Gerry Goffin-penned tune with several remarkable vocal runs.
Hudson followed with a tribute to both Davis – who signed her after her run on American Idol – and one of the mogul’s most acclaimed artists, Whitney Houston.
Hudson opened her set with a rendition of “Hallelujah” before unleashing a medley of Houston hits that included “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and “How Will I Know.”
Earth, Wind & Fire took the stage for an invigorating performance of “September” and got an assist on the horn parts from another hugely successful Clive Davis artist: Kenny G.
Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives was directed by Chris Perkel and is based on Davis’ 2013 autobiography of the same name. The film explores Davis’ remarkable life and career working with countless artists including Bruce Springsteen, Janis Joplin, Billy Joel, Patti Smith and Christina Aguilera. Apple Music acquired the rights to The Soundtrack of Our Lives prior to its Tribeca premiere, though a wide release date has yet to be announced.