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Whitney Houston dies aged 48

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Author Topic: Whitney Houston dies aged 48  (Read 31 times)
Mandy Esser
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« on: February 13, 2012, 02:17:31 am »




The star performed The Star Spangled Banner at the 1991 Super Bowl, and donated proceeds to the American Red Cross Gulf Crisis Fund

To this day, she holds the record for having the most consecutive chart-topping singles in the US - reaching number one seven times between 1985 and 1988.

The first of those, Saving All My Love For You, set the template of towering, melismatic vocal performances - with Houston stretching single syllables out over dozens of notes.

Artists from Mariah Carey to Christina Aguilera have tried to emulate her bravura performances, but none of them were as good as the original, music critic Paul Gambaccini told the BBC.

Houston also enjoyed success acting in blockbuster films such as The Bodyguard and Waiting to Exhale.

Sony Pictures announced on Sunday that it would release the star's final film, Sparkle, which is loosely based on the story of The Supremes, in August.

"Like all those who knew and loved her, we are shocked and saddened," said spokesman Steve Elzer said on behalf of the studio. "The world has lost an incomparable talent."

The film also features Houston's final recordings - including a cover of the gospel standard His Eye Is On The Sparrow - which will be released on a soundtrack album over the summer.
Drug abuse
Photos published by TMZ.com showing Whitney Houston out in Hollywood on 9 February 2012 Whitney Houston had been partying heavily at a pre-Grammy party on Thursday night

In recent years drug use had taken its toll on the star and her voice - once acknowledged as one of the finest in pop music - was badly damaged.

She cancelled the first date of what was to be her final UK tour in 2010 citing respiratory problems. In her later performances, she was often said to be short of breath and unable to sustain the long, high notes that had been a hallmark of her career.

"The biggest devil is me. I'm either my best friend or my worst enemy,'' Houston told ABC's Diane Sawyer in a 2002 interview.

According to TMZ, Houston had been partying heavily on both Thursday and Friday nights.

She briefly took the microphone and performed a song while out in Hollywood on Thursday, and was seen drinking and chatting loudly with friends in the hotel bar on Friday, according to TMZ.

Despite her personal problems, she was still a widely-respected figure in the music industry.

Singer and X Factor judge Kelly Rowland paid tribute on Twitter, saying Houston had advised her in the early days of her career.

"I am beyond heartbroken. Whitney Houston was undoubtedly one of the greatest singers and performers of all time and such a huge influence of me [sic].
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Tributes from rapper Sean 'Diddy' Coombes and singer Alicia Keys - Courtesy The Recording Academy

"She embraced me when I first started out with Destiny's Child, with love, with encouragement and with that powerhouse voice."

Country singer Dolly Parton - who wrote one one of Houston's most memorable hits, I Will Always Love You - said in a statement: "Mine is only one of the millions of hearts broken over the death of Whitney Houston."

"I will always be grateful and in awe of the wonderful performance she did on my song, and I can truly say from the bottom of my heart, 'Whitney, I will always love you. You will be missed'."

George Merrill and Shannon Rubicam, who wrote two of Houston's biggest hits How Will I Know and I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me), paid tribute to her "matchless" voice.

"I am grateful to her always for the gifts she brought to my life by recording - by so thoroughly rocking - our two songs," said Rubicam.

"So Whitney, from my heart, I honour you and wish you peace and joy, wherever you are."

Rap mogul P Diddy recalled the time he spent with the star, saying: "She always hit you with that beautiful smile, she always hit you with that incredible energy.

"She gave you that hug that, you know? That grandma hug that you know that just shook your body."
More on This Story
Whitney Houston 1963-2012

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-17003271

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