I am sure that the song of the week will touch your heart just as the life and times of Whitney Houston has touched the lives of Americans and dare I say the world. THE GREATEST LOVE OF ALL has become an anthem for children’s graduations and weddings because the sentiment of the song is so simple. Her love of children, family and friends was evident as she sang this song and that is just one of many reasons I chose this song.
In a world full of joy, pain, love and loss — there was Whitney. She was the songstress whose melodies were the soundtrack of my life. I grew up looking at Whitney as she graced the cover of SEVENTEEN Magazine as the first African-American to occupy the cover by herself. I LOOKED TO YOU, Whitney to be my role model of beauty. Your beauty was not the beauty that was projected in the media for young girls. Your short curly hair and big wide smile taught me about self-acceptance.
When she sang, I WANNA DANCE WITH SOMEBODY my heart leapt for joy and I joined the Soul Train line and waited to strut my stuff for my special guy. I’d get SO EMOTIONAL whenever I’d hear one of your new songs on the radio. I asked myself HOW WILL I KNOW? if he really loves me as a teenager in love and Whitney made that alright for me. Her voice and success laid the foundation for Mariah Carey, Alicia Keys, Destiny’s Child, Britteny Spears, Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Hudson, Jill Scott and a litany of other women who joined the musical ranks.
Whitney’s rendition of I’M EVERY WOMAN became the anthem of womanhood and women of every race joined and sang along with her as we celebrated her pregnancy with her. Her sultry vocals transcended race, class and politics. Her message was carefully crafted and universal and it became clear that WHEN YOU BELIEVE miracles truly did happen. Her Olympic Anthem, ONE MOMENT IN TIME captured the world, as did her version of STAR SPANGLED BANNER. Whitney’s solo work and musical collaborations continue to be favorites world-wide. Just days before her death she shared the stage with Kelly Price and sang JESUS LOVES ME, that would be her final public performance and what an appropriate song this is to have ended her storied career with.
A few of my favorites that held me together through a really terrible break-up were:
SAVING ALL MY LOVE FOR YOU,
DON’T WALK AWAY FROM ME, and
WHY DOES IT HURT SO BAD?
I will not reflect on Whitney’s personal demons because it is not how I chose to reflect on her life. We all have our crosses to bear her’s was addiction and it is not my right to judge her. I conclude by saying I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU Whitney Houston and I thank you for the influence and contributions that your music has had on my life.
MY LOVE IS YOUR LOVE,