Whitney Houston, once considered the princess of pop music before her apparent drug use and tumultuous marriage to singer Bobby Brown, has been found dead in her Los Angeles hotel room. She was 48.
Whitney Houston, who has an 18-year-old- daughter, Bobbi Christina, with Bobby Brown, was considered part of R&B royalty. She was the daughter of gospel singer Cissy Houston, who was the cousin of Dionne Warwick and the goddaughter of Aretha Franklin. Music mogul Clive Davis was said to have discovered Whitney Houston in her mother’s club when she was a teenager.
“To hear this young girl breathe such fire into this song. I mean, it really sent the proverbial tingles up my spine,” said Clive Davis about his newfound star.
Whitney Houston’s debut album, 1985’s “Whitney Houston,” sold millions of copies and produced a ton of hits, including “How Will I Know” and “The Greatest Love of All.” The New York Times said she was “one of her generation’s most powerful gospel-trained voices.”
Whitney Houston, who was often criticized for not being “R&B enough” surprised fans when she married New Edition member Bobby Brown in 1992. Whitney Houston had a squeaky clean image, and Bobby Brown was considered R&B’s “bad boy.”
She told Rolling Stone in 1993: “When you love, you love. I mean, do you stop loving somebody because you have different images? You know, Bobby and I basically come from the same place…I am not always in a sequined gown. I am nobody’s angel. I can get down and dirty. I can get raunchy.”
Whitney Houston, who appeared in several successful movies, including “The Bodyguard,” “Waiting to Exhale,” and “The Preacher’s Wife,” told Oprah that during the filming of “The Preacher’s Wife,” she was already battling a drug addiction. She said: “(doing drugs) was an everyday thing. … I would do my work, but after I did my work, for a whole year or two, it was every day. … I wasn’t happy by that point in time. I was losing myself.”
Whitney Houston often cited her marriage to Bobby Brown as a source of her problems. She charged him with domestic abuse in 1993, and they eventually divorced in 2007.
Whitney Houston was found dead in her hotel room in the Beverly Hilton on Saturday afternoon. The cause of death is not yet known.