Stevie Wonder, Clive Davis Honor Aretha Franklin at Billboard's Women in Music

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Aretha Franklin

"In 1980, she cooked dinner with me and we spent hours in her kitchen, trading music experiences and exploring whether we could collaborate to make future recordings"

Aretha Franklin is someone who has impacted much more than just music — her self-assurance and uncompromising artistry has inspired women for generations.

So it was only fitting that at the 2014 Billboard Women in Music event, Franklin would be offered some major R-E-S-P-E-C-T: the Icon of the Year honor.

Franklin was introduced by longtime collaborator and friend Clive Davis, who lauded her for topping various Billboard charts 100 separate times. He also recalled their first meeting: "In 1980, she cooked dinner with me and we spent hours in her kitchen, trading music experiences and exploring whether we could collaborate to make future recordings. We hit it off, and we've been making records ever since."

See more Billboard Women in Music 2014 Red Carpet

After Davis, Franklin took the stage and delivered a brief speech. "I don’t get the opportunity to be with industry people as much as I'd like to," she said. "I want to thank Billboard and their staff personnel for this."

Stevie Wonder even sent in his regards via video, singing a congratulations to the tune of his own "My Cherie Amour." It was a fitting tribute to an undeniable legend.

This post originally appeared on Billboard.com.

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