Ariana Grande attended Aretha Franklin’s funeral on Friday and belted out a powerful rendition of one of the Queen of Soul’s iconic songs. However, the beautiful moment was quickly overshadowed when the pastor presiding over Franklin’s funeral told the popstar that he had originally mistaken her for a menu item from Taco Bell, as reported by People.
Celebrities, politicians, family, and friends all gathered at the Greater Grace Temple in Detroit, Michigan, on Friday to celebrate the life of the great Aretha Franklin, who passed away on August 16 at the age of 76 from pancreatic cancer. The “Celebration of Life” funeral service lasted for over six hours and was presided over by Bishop Charles H. Ellis III.
One of the celebrities invited to perform at the service was Ariana Grande, 25, and when her time came to pay tribute to the Queen of Soul, Grande chose to sing one of Franklin’s classic songs, “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman.”
Following her performance, Ellis joined Grande at the podium and proceeded to offer her his apologies as he originally believed her name was a menu item at the popular fast-food chain.
“I’ve got to apologize because I have to brush up. My 28-year-old daughter tells me, ‘Dad! You are old at 60’. When I saw Ariana Grande on the program, I thought that was a new something at Taco Bell,” he told her.
At that moment, the entire room, including Grande, erupted with laughter. The “God Is A Woman” singer proceeded to give Ellis a hug, as to show there were no hard feelings.
“Girl, let me give you all your respect,” Ellis continued. “Did you enjoy this icon? She is an icon herself. Come on, make her feel loved,” he told the crowd.
The audience then proceeded to give Grande a standing ovation.
As to be expected, many viewers rushed to Twitter to share their reactions of the incident.
It turns out, Franklin’s family saw Grande honor the “Respect” singer on the day of her death when she appeared on Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show and sang the exact same song. As a result, Grande was invited to perform at Franklin’s funeral.
During her appearance on Fallon, the “R.E.M.” singer revealed that she had the honor of meeting Franklin more than once.
“I met her a few times. We sang at the White House, and she was so sweet, and she was so cute. I was like, ‘How are you a real person?’ It’s an honor to have met her, and we’re gonna celebrate her,” she said.
Grande also recalled the time Franklin actually called her.
“She called me one time. It was one time only. She called me. She goes, ‘Hi, it’s Aretha.’ And I was like, ‘Franklin?'”
Grande’s fiance, Pete Davidson, was also in attendance, along with Bill and Hillary Clinton, Barack and Michelle Obama, Stevie Wonder, Faith Hill, Jennifer Hudson, Chaka Khan, and Gladys Knight, just to name a few.