Celine Dion learned to sing from the "soul" thanks to the late Aretha Franklin.

Celine Dion

Celine Dion

The 50-year-old singer has praised the late 'Respect' hitmaker - who passed away in August last year - for teaching her to reach deeper within herself when singing, as she said music should come from "deeper than the heart".

Speaking to 'Entertainment Tonight' at the 'Aretha! A GRAMMY Celebration for the Queen of Soul' concert in Los Angeles, Celine said: "I've had the privilege of singing at [VH1's] 'Divas' with her and when I had one moment, I had one line I was not gonna mess on that. I had a moment with her that I will never forget and I will cherish this for the rest of my life ... I remember taking a picture with her after meeting with her, singing her [songs] of course, and when you love to sing so much, it's gotta be done with the soul.

"You sing with your heart but she has taught us that, when we believe so much, that it comes from deeper than the heart, it comes from the soul. So we did not invent those words, she gave those words. She put those words into our repertoire, into our lives and dreams ... our performances."

The 'My Heart Will Go On' hitmaker then said she felt "extremely fortunate" to be one of the performers at the concert on Saturday (12.01.19), and said it was touching to be able to relive Aretha's greatest hits.

She added: "I feel extremely, extremely fortunate and honored that they called me to pay tribute to her because I think that we all took through the years a little part of her. We did not sing her tonight, we lived her."

John Legend, Jennifer Hudson, Kelly Clarkson, Alicia Keys, Common, and many more artists also took to the stage to honour the late star, who died at the age of 76 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer.