There were numerous reports this week saying that Aretha Franklin was “banned” from Whitney Houston’s funeral on Saturday.
New York Daily News reported that Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston’s godmother, “angered” the late singer’s mother, Cissy Houston, with her comments during an interview on the Today Show.
“Parents have to really talk to their children before they leave home,” Aretha Franklin told Al Roker.
“They have to make sure when they leave home, they have all the right things. She left home with all the right things, but she just kind of lost her way along the way.”
The Daily News story also suggests it was this “veiled criticism” of Whitney Houston’s upbringing – and not Aretha Franklin’s medical excuse – that led her to miss the legendary singer’s service.
Meanwhile, HollywoodLife seized on the possible controversy, writing that Aretha Franklin’s “drug comments” might have caused her to be “banned” from the funeral by Cissy Houston.
The website uses the fact that Aretha Franklin played a sold-out concert in New York on Saturday night as evidence that there could be something to the “ban” explanation.
But Aretha Franklin said in her statement regarding her absence from the funeral that she wanted to “stay off [her] leg” as much as possible until her concert that night.
And it warrants mention that during the funeral, Dionne Warwick called for Aretha Franklin – still on the scheduled speakers list – to address mourners, before being alerted that the singer was not in attendance.
If there was any animosity between the Houston family and Aretha Franklin, it was awfully well hidden.
HollywoodLife also leaves out Aretha Franklin’s rep’s comments to the Daily News in which she reiterates that the singer was essentially incapacitated between concert performances over the weekend.