Whitney Elizabeth Houston was towering vocal talent the likes of which we may not see again in this lifetime. Sadly she died a tragic death at age 49 in Los Angeles in the midst of a comeback, but the circumstances of her death is not the legacy she leaves behind. It’s in the musical gift that for many years made her one of the most successful singers in the industry.
Veteran music executive Clive Davis, who signed Houston at age 19 has just released a compilation of Houston’s live performances including a stunning performance at the 1994 American Music Awards and her first televised performance in 1983 on the Merv Griffin show. He says that these are the moments that Houston should be remembered by, not any of the dramas in her personal life.
“It’s timely in the sense that during Whitney’s life tabloids got off kilter,” says Davis. “It got away from the music. People forgot that she was the greatest singer of her generation. This live album, which is getting incredible reviews, It’s time we get back to the music which was the passion of Whitney’s life.”
The 16 cute CD/DVD features all the musical highlights of Houston’s over two-decade career. Davis says that he went through everything to choose the best of the bunch for this project.
“I went through everything she had done. The performances go from when she was 19 in 1983, and it takes you chronologically up until 2009 on the Oprah Winfrey Show,” Davis says.
As for his own personal favorites, Houston’s very first live performance is one close to his heart. “
“Well, obviously ‘Home’ is one of them. The performance of Greatest Love of All from the Arista 15th Anniversary makes your jaws drop open. The medley is probably the greatest awards medley I’ve ever heard where Whitney combines ‘I Love You Porgy’ from ‘Porgy and Bess’ to ‘And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going’ long before the Dreamgirls movie and then ends it with ‘I Have Nothing’ from The Bodyguard soundtrack.”
Davis also references another performance from 1994 in South Africa where Houston wore a golden turban and matching dress to perform in front of a crowd of 105,000.
“To see the impact that she had worldwide, he says. “That she in a turban, movie star beauty, comes and takes control of the stage just an amazing impact on all these people on the other side of the globe. This set is her musical bio that takes her from 1983 to 2009.“