Inside the Lifelong Friendship of Aretha Franklin and Smokey Robinson

Inside the Lifelong Friendship of Aretha Franklin and Smokey Robinson

When Aretha Franklin was inducted into the second class of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1987, she had a familiar face by her side: fellow inductee and lifelong friend Smokey Robinson. It was rather symbolic that the two kids from Detroit, who grew up playing games in the neighborhood together, had both made […]

Inside Natalie Wood and Mart Crowley’s 20-Year Friendship

Inside Natalie Wood and Mart Crowley's 20-Year Friendship

Natalie Wood‘s first taste of fame came as a child when she scored the lead role in 1947’s Miracle on 34th Street. She would grow up to become a three-time Academy Award-nominated actress, but her mysterious 1981 death has become her lasting legacy. Pioneering gay writer Mart Crowley would also attract international fame when his breakthrough and controversial […]

Yuri Kochiyama and Malcolm X’s Boundary-Breaking Friendship

Yuri Kochiyama and Malcolm X's Boundary-Breaking Friendship

On paper, Yuri Kochiyama and Malcolm X made an unexpected pair — a Japanese American mother of six and a firebrand Muslim minister and Black nationalist. But their brief friendship, interrupted by his assassination in 1965, sheds light on the multi-racial cooperation of the civil rights movement and the broader fight against racial injustice around the […]