Before the funeral of Aretha Franklin got underway in Detroit, London paid its “Respect” with a performance by the Band of the Welsh Guards outside of Buckingham Palace. Traditionally the Band of the Welsh Guards plays music during the changing of the guards, but today, they played one of Franklin’s hits, “Respect,” outside of the royal residence.
Vox said that James Corden shared a clip of the band honoring Aretha, saying that he was having a moment of pride for his home country.
“This makes me proud to be British! Respect.”
The Welsh Guards stated that Aretha Franklin has always been a big inspiration to all of their musicians, and they believe she shared a universal message.
“In the Army Respect for others underpins all that we do, so there was only one tune that would do for today’s ceremony: the 1967 Aretha Franklin hit ‘R.E.S.P.E.C.T.’ a declaration from a strong confident woman who knows that she has everything.”
The Washington Post said that those at Buckingham Palace this morning got to witness the Queen of England paying tribute to Aretha Franklin the Queen of Soul with a classical version of her song in the courtyard.
— CBS News (@CBSNews) August 31, 2018
The British Army released its own statement, saying that they wanted to share a proper send-off to a songstress who was popular around the globe.
“The Band of the Welsh Guards are world famous for their musical versatility and professional performance and this morning paid tribute to another musical icon and one that has been of huge influence and inspiration to our musicians — Aretha Franklin, whose funeral was being held in Detroit 3,748 miles away, at the same time of the Queen’s Guard Change.”
While it is the policy of the royal family not to comment on politics or current events, Queen Elizabeth has been known on occasion to pay tribute to someone or something using the Band of the Welsh Guards.
“Buckingham Palace has on many occasions used the Changing of the Guard as an opportunity to acknowledge world events. For example, the day after the 9/11 terrorist attacks in New York City and the capital, America’s National Anthem was played during the ceremony.”
It’s hard to imagine that Aretha Franklin wouldn’t appreciate the Band of the Welsh Guards, dressed in their red coats (ironically matching the glamorous outfit Franklin wore to be laid to rest) and tall bearskin hats, playing “Respect” outside of the queen’s residence.