Ariana Grande Breaks Down While Performing Aretha Franklin Tribute

Meanwhile, her fans are concerned that Aretha's death will block Ari's album from hitting number one.

Hours after the death of Aretha Franklin was announced, Ariana Grande performed a tribute to the late icon, singing "Natural Woman" while appearing on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

Originally, Ari was only meant to appear in a comedy skit with Jimmy, to promote the release of her album Sweetener, which will be released on streaming services this afternoon.

TMZ reported that Ariana was initially hesitant to perform.

"Ariana told them she couldn't do it," TMZ wrote. "She was just too emotional in the wake of her death. She said Aretha was one of her heroes."

No stranger to performing under difficult and emotional circumstances, Ari ended up opening the show -- which will air later today -- with a rendition of "Natural Woman" alongside The Roots. Reports are that she "brought the house down" and got a standing ovation, before breaking down in tears.

While there's no video of her performance just yet, one fan did manage to catch Ari rehearsing the track in the bathroom before filming began.

Also on Twitter, some of Ariana's stans -- the Arianators -- have been voicing concerns that the soul diva's passing will block Sweetener from reaching the number one spot, which is... a choice!

Ariana also appeared on The Late Late Show with James Corden last night, where she joined him for Carpool Karaoke and ordered a Grande latte from Starbucks.

Feature image: Getty Images