After hearing about the tragic passing of Whitney Houston, I joined in on the social media tributes by simply tweeting, “You will be missed Ms. Houston.”
That’s exactly how I felt at that moment. Beyond the shock and disbelief, I was overcome with a sudden longing to have her back and for her to continue to grace us with her amazing voice.
It was her voice that captured the hearts and minds of millions.
In the end, that is what she gave to the world, and is what first made us fall in love with her.
Her wide range, powerful tone, and amazing melismatic ability was untouched, and it was her unique approach to creating music that influenced an entire generation of artists.
The cliche phrase, “If it weren’t for me, there would be no you” isn’t a stretch when discussing Houston’s impact on the music industry.
Had Houston not come out in the 1980s, sell millions of albums, break Billboard records, and further bridge the gap between pop, R&B, dance and soul music, then many of today’s female artists would not have the enormous opportunities that they have now.
Being one of the world’s best selling artist is no easy feat. It takes, dedication, strength, creativity, and most importantly, talent. Houston possessed all those aspects and more.
She was truly an artist and carried on the soulful musical torch that was started by legendary singers such as Dianna Ross, Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight, and Chaka Khan.
Gladys Knight said she might catch some slack for this, but told a reporter that “There will never be another voice like hers.”
I know Ms. Knight is not the only person who feels that way about Houston’s vocal prowess. And I for one can second that emotion.
Tonight, as we honor Ms. Whitney Houston at the Grammy’s, keep in mind that an artist of her magnitude does not come around often.
My thoughts and prayers go out to her entire family.
She will truly be missed.
I decided long ago never to walk in anyone’s shadow; if I fail, or if I succeed at least I did as I believe.