Biography

The top pop diva of the 1980s and '90s, Houston later became plagued by career-hampering problems. After working as a model in her teens, this sexy hit-maker burst onto the music scene in 1985 with her eponymous debut album, which spawned a slew of No. 1 songs.  She formed the Whitney Houston Foundation for Children in 1989, which gives annual grants for deserving minorities to attend New York City's Juilliard School of Music. In 1992, Houston made her seemingly inevitable film debut in the romantic thriller The Bodyguard and married R&B singer Bobby Brown. Although she continued to make movies and albums for the rest of the decade, stories about her unstable personal life filled the tabloids, overshadowing her music career. In 2005 Houston and her hubby opened up their lives to even more scrutiny when they launched their own reality show, Being Bobby Brown, although the couple separated the following year after 14 years of marriage. She released a greatest-hits compilation called The Ultimate Collection in 2007 and a new album entitled I Look to You in 2009. On the eve of the 54th Grammy Awards in 2012, Houston was preparing to attend her mentor Clive Davis' pre-Grammy party when she accidentally drowned in the bathtub of her room at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

Fast Facts

  • Nicknamed Nippy by her parents; later used that as the name of her management company.
  • Began singing in her mother's church choir at 11 years old.
  • Landed gigs as a backup vocalist for Chaka Khan and Lou Rawls in 1978.
  • Worked as a model in the early 1980s, gracing the covers of Glamour and Seventeen magazines.
  • Appeared on the sitcoms Gimme a Break! (1984) and Silver Spoons (1985).
  • Broke a U.S. chart record in 1988 with seven consecutive No. 1 hits, beating the previous record of six by the Beatles and the Bee Gees.
  • Formed the Whitney Houston Foundation for Children in 1989, which gives annual grants for deserving minorities to attend New York City's Juilliard School of Music.
  • Received an honorary doctorate from Grambling University.
  • Accidentally drowned on the eve of the 54th Grammy Awards in the bathtub in her room at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, where she was preparing to appear at mentor Clive Davis' pre-Grammy party.

Awards

  • 1993, Grammy — Album of the Year: Winner
  • 1987, Grammy — Best Pop Vocal Performance - Female: Winner
  • 1998, Emmy — Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Special: Nominee
  • 1985, Grammy — Best Female Pop Vocal Performance: Winner
  • 1989, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Female Musical Performer: Winner
  • 1993, Grammy — Record of the Year: Winner
  • 1999, Grammy — Best Female R&B Vocal Performance: Winner
  • 1993, Grammy — Best Female Pop Vocal Performance: Winner
  • 1993, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Female Musical Performer: Winner
  • 1988, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Female Musical Performer: Winner
  • 1993, People's Choice Awards — Favorite New Music Video: Winner
  • 1987, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Female Musical Performer: Winner
  • 1998, People's Choice Awards — Favorite Female Musical Performer: Winner
  • 1986, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program: Winner

Relationships

  • Cissy Houston — Mother
  • Aretha Franklin — Godparent
  • Rayah Houston — Niece
  • Dionne Warwick — Cousin
  • John Houston — Father
  • Bobbi Kristina Brown — Daughter
  • Bobby Brown — Ex-husband
  • Michael Houston — Brother
  • Gary Garland Houston — Brother

Details

  • Birth Name: Whitney Elizabeth Houston
  • Birth Place: Newark, NJ
  • Birthday: August 9, 1963, Leo
  • Died: February 11, 2012
  • Profession: Singer, Actor, Model
  • User Rating:3.68 out of 5 (761 ratings)
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