The Queen of Soul’s publicist confirmed the 76-year-old had passed away at her home in Detroit, with her family gathering at her bedside.
Legendary American songwriter Carole King, who penned Aretha’s classic 1967 hit ‘(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman’ was one of the first to pay tribute.
She tweeted: “What a life. What a legacy! So much love, respect and gratitude.”
Other stars including Elton John, Ricky Martin and Liam Gallagher also took to social media to remember the star...
US President Donald Trump also tweeted his sympathies.
He said: “The Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, is dead. She was a great woman, with a wonderful gift from God, her voice. She will be missed!”
Aretha’s career spanned over 60 years and made her an icon of American music. During this time, she earned 18 Grammys and became the first ever woman to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
She was last seen performing in August 2017 at Elton John’s AIDS Foundation Party, where Showbiz 411 claimed she was “fighting exhaustion and dehydration”.
The same year, she was also forced to deny a death hoax, after fake news of her death spread online.
Aretha leaves behind four children. She gave birth to the eldest, Clarence, when she was just 12-years-old.