(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman

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"Natural Woman" redirects here. For the Japanese film, see Natural Woman (film).
"(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman"
A-side label of U.S. vinyl release
Single by Aretha Franklin
from the album Lady Soul
B-side "Baby, Baby, Baby"
Released September 1967
Format 7" single
Recorded 1967
Genre Soul
Length 2:45
Label Atlantic
Writer(s) Gerry Goffin, Carole King, Jerry Wexler
Producer(s) Jerry Wexler
Aretha Franklin singles chronology
"Baby I Love You"
(1967)
"(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman"
(1967)
"Chain of Fools"
(1967)

"(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" is a 1967 single released by American soul singer Aretha Franklin on the Atlantic label. The song was co-written by Carole King and Gerry Goffin, with input from Atlantic producer Jerry Wexler. The record was a big hit for Franklin, reaching number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100, and became a standard song for her. Franklin also included a live recording on the album Aretha in Paris in 1968. Versions have also been performed and recorded by King herself, Mary J. Blige, Celine Dion, and many others. At the 2015 Kennedy Center Honors, Aretha Franklin performed the song to honor award-recipient Carole King.

Original recording[edit]

Written by the celebrated partnership of Gerry Goffin and Carole King, the song was inspired by Atlantic Records co-owner and producer Jerry Wexler. As recounted in his autobiography, Wexler, a student of African-American musical culture, had been mulling over the concept of the "natural man", when he drove by King on the streets of New York. He shouted out to her that he wanted a "natural woman" song for Aretha Franklin's next album. In thanks, Goffin and King granted Wexler a co-writing credit.

Personnel[edit]

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1967) Peak
position
Australia 36
Canada RPM 11
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 8
U.S. Billboard R&B 2
U.S. Cash Box Top 100 12

Later versions[edit]

Carole King performing "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" in 2010

"Natural Woman" was released by Peggy Lipton in 1968 on her self-titled album on Ode Records, and by Freddie Hughes in 1968 as "Natural Man" (Wand Records 1192), and by George Benson on his album Goodies in 1968 (Verve Records V6-8771).

It was recorded by Carole King on her landmark 1971 album Tapestry. Celine Dion recorded the song in 1995 for the Tapestry Revisited album, and released it as a single. Mary J. Blige also recorded the song that year.

Carole King and Gloria Estefan performed the song in May 2009 in the She's Got a Friend concerts at the Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut. The audio from one of the performances was included on some editions of Estefan's 2013 album, The Standards.

In December 2015, Aretha Franklin gave a universally acclaimed performance at the 2015 Kennedy Center Honors during the section for honoree Carole King.[1][2][3][4]

Mary J. Blige recording[edit]

Charts[edit]

Year Chart Peak
position
1996 Dutch Singles Chart[5] 36
1995 UK Singles Chart[6] 23
1995 US Billboard Hot 100[7] 95
1995 US Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs[8] 39

Celine Dion version[edit]

"(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" was released as a promotional single by Celine Dion in November 1995 in North America and the United Kingdom.[9] It was featured on a tribute album to Carole King, called Tapestry Revisited: A Tribute to Carole King issued on October 24, 1995. Later, Dion included this track on most editions of her 1996 album Falling into You. The track was produced by David Foster. Dion's version enjoyed a moderate success on the adult contemporary charts, reaching number 4 in Canada and number 31 in the United States. In 2008, the song was featured on the US version of My Love: Ultimate Essential Collection.

On April 14, 1998, Dion, Aretha Franklin, Mariah Carey, Shania Twain, Gloria Estefan and Carole King performed the song during a VH1 Divas concert at the Beacon Theatre, New York. The five vocalists were recruited by the cable music network VH1 to raise money for Save the Music, their education charity. Hyped extensively in the press, the event was a ratings' winner for VH1 - so successful, in fact, that the network arranged to have the concert released on disc and tape on October 6, 1998. At that time "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" (performed by all divas) was released as a radio single in selected countries.

Formats and track listings[edit]

1995 promotional CD single

  1. "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" – 3:40

1998 promotional CD single

  1. "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" (live) – 5:15
  2. "You've Got a Friend" (live) – 5:28

Charts[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Miller, Matt (December 30, 2015). "Aretha Franklin Just Brought the Leader of the Free World to Tears". Esquire. Retrieved 31 December 2015. 
  2. ^ Greer, Carlos (December 9, 2015). "Aretha Franklin stuns at Kennedy Center Honors". Page Six. Retrieved 31 December 2015. 
  3. ^ Hattenstone, Simon (30 December 2015). "Obama cries as Aretha Franklin proves why she's the queen of soul". the Guardian. Retrieved 31 December 2015. 
  4. ^ Kreps, Daniel (December 30, 2015). "Watch Aretha Franklin Bring Obama to Tears at Kennedy Center Honors". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 31 December 2015. 
  5. ^ "Song artist 278 - Mary J. Blige". Tsort.info. 2007-10-08. Retrieved 2012-01-07. 
  6. ^ "Song artist 278 - Mary J. Blige". Tsort.info. 2007-10-08. Retrieved 2012-01-07. 
  7. ^ Billboard Hot 100
  8. ^ Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs
  9. ^ Glatzer, Jenna (2005). Céline Dion: For Keeps. Andrews McMeel Publishing. ISBN 0-7407-5559-5. 
  10. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 2913." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 3 September 2014.
  11. ^ "Top RPM Adult Contemporary: Issue 2865." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 3 September 2014.
  12. ^ "Celine Dion – Chart history" Billboard Adult Contemporary for Celine Dion. Retrieved 25 September 2014.
  13. ^ "RPM Year End Top 100 Adult Contemporary Tracks". RPM Weekly 64 (18). 16 December 1996. Retrieved 28 September 2014.