When Aretha Franklin and Mariah Carey sang a duet of 'Chain of Fools' and blew the roof

26 March 2021, 12:26

Aretha Franklin was appearing on VH1 Divas Live when she announced that she was inviting guest Mariah Carey on stage with 'no rehearsal'.
Aretha Franklin was appearing on VH1 Divas Live when she announced that she was inviting guest Mariah Carey on stage with 'no rehearsal'. Picture: VH1

By Giorgina Hamilton

Aretha Franklin was performing on VH1 Divas Live in 1998 when she invited Mariah Carey on stage for an unforgettable duet of 'Chain of Fools'.

Aretha Franklin and Mariah Carey singing 'Chain of Fools' in 1998 is astounding.

The Queen of Soul was appearing on VH1 Divas Live when she announced that she was inviting a guest on stage with 'no rehearsal'.

See more: 5 of Aretha Franklin's greatest live performances, from 'Rolling in The Deep' to 'Natural Woman'

Mariah Carey then walks out from behind the scenes to join Aretha Franklin and the two perform a duet of 'Chain of Fools' that completely stuns the crowd.

Aretha Franklin started singing 'Chain of Fools' as Mariah Carey walked out to join her in a stunning duet.
Aretha Franklin started singing 'Chain of Fools' as Mariah Carey walked out to join her in a stunning duet. Picture: VH1
Aretha Franklin was performing on VH1 Divas Live when she invited Mariah Carey to join her for a stunning duet.
Aretha Franklin was performing on VH1 Divas Live when she invited Mariah Carey to join her for a stunning duet. Picture: VH1

See more: Aretha Franklin's family 'do not support' new 'Genius' biopic and say series is 'extremely disrespectful'

The clip has re-emerged thanks to Mariah Carey who is celebrating 'Divas Week' on her social media.

The last week in March sees some of the biggest singing 'divas' celebrate their birthdays over a seven day period.

See more: Mariah Carey's 10 best songs of all time, ranked

Divas sharing the same birthday week include Chaka Khan (March 23), Aretha Franklin (March 25), Diana Ross (March 26) and Mariah Carey herself (March 27).

Mariah posted a video of her a Aretha performing on her social media alongside the caption: "Happy DIVA week!!!! Highlighting some of my favorite moments w/these incredible timeless QUEENS of everything!!!!!"

See more: When Aretha Franklin stepped in to sing ‘Nessun Dorma’ after Pavarotti fell sick at the Grammys, and it was astonishing

Mariah Carey (left) and Aretha Franklin perform onstage during the 'Divas Live--An Honors Concert for VH1 Save the Music' at the Beacon Theater, New York, New York, April 14, 1998.
Mariah Carey (left) and Aretha Franklin perform onstage during the 'Divas Live--An Honors Concert for VH1 Save the Music' at the Beacon Theater, New York, New York, April 14, 1998. Picture: Getty

"Enjoy! And LOVE to all the “Typical Aries” (said like Ms. Franklin) in all the land!," she added, "Happy Birthday Queen of Soul!"

See more: Relive Mariah Carey and Olivia Newton-John’s rarely heard duet of ‘Hopelessly Devoted To You’

Taking to social media, Mariah Carey shared a clip of her performing with Aretha against a backdrop of her describing the performance with quotes from her latest book The Meaning of Mariah Carey.

See more: Aretha Franklin facts: Queen of Soul's age, husbands, children and vocal range explained

Describing how Aretha Franklin brought her on stage, Mariah recalls: "She told the audience that she and her 'newest girlfriend' didn't get to rehearse. 'But she's going to come out and join me'."

"The band began 'Chain of Fools,' and I walked out on the stage," Mariah says over footage of the two in 1998.

"Her energy was so powerful. I just kept my focus on her and sang when she told me to sing. And we did the song."

See more: Why George Michael and Aretha Franklin's spectacular duet of 'I Knew You Were Waiting' is even better 34 years on

"I ended with a bow and an 'All hail the queen!' How else do you exit a moment like that?" she recalls, adding that Aretha "Just jeered to me and said, 'Ms. Carey, that was enough for my soul.'"