Aretha Franklin and Dionne Warwick have a serious beef. The Queen of Soul is officially clapping back at what she claims were “libelous” statements made by Warwick during Whitney Houston’s funeral, five years ago.
“There’s been so much going on around her [Houston], around the service, around the drugs, around her and Bobby [Brown] supposed to be fighting, I didn’t want to add anything to that and I didn’t want to be a part of that,” Franklin to the Associated Press Tuesday (April 25).
Franklin reached out to AP — by fax machine and telephone — to call out Warwick for referring to her as Houston’s godmother.
As AP notes, Franklin missed Houston’s funeral because she was suffering from swollen feet, and was booked to play Radio City Music Hall later that night. Warwick initially told funeral-goers that Franklin was in attendance, before realizing that she wasn’t there.
“She loves Whitney as if she were born to her, “Warwick said of Franklin at the time. “She is her godmother.”
Although Houston was a child when she met Franklin, her actual godmother is singer Darlene Love, who is best known for the 1963 holiday classic “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home).”
Warwick, 76, and Franklin, 75, came face to face during a screening for a Clive Davis documentary at the Tribeca Film Festival last week. As you can probably guess, there wasn’t a lot of love between the two. “She said, ‘Give me a hug.’ I said, ‘Oh hell no. You couldn’t be serious,'” Franklin recalled.
Despite the tension, Franklin doesn’t want an apology. “At this point it isn’t about an apology, it’s about libel,” she said.
“We’ve never been friends,” Franklin added. “And I don’t think that Dionne has ever liked me.”
Meanwhile, Warwick refused to “dignify” Franklin’s comments with a response.
The shade is real.