You know when she wasn’t smoking crack, getting abused by her douchebag of a husband or giving lacklustre performances on prominent UK TV Talent Shows (Ed – Ahem), Whitney Houston was pretty fucking good.
To me there are two versions of Whitney Houston. 80s Whitney and 90s Whitney. Both were brilliant in different ways.
80s Whitney Houston comes on like a baby tiger cub. Fresh from the litter and full of the exuberance of a creature who has never been hurt before. Unafraid, unapologetic and not reluctant to ask questions. She’s curious and hopeful and all the other cool adjectives you are before you become ‘old’ and ‘jaded’.
How Will I Know?
I wanna Dance with Somebody
The budgets are small, the hair is big and the tunes are huge.
90s Whitney is grown up. She’s singing about having her heart broken by some douche bag. Wearing leather and snarling. I reckon this era of Whitney’s career laid a lot of the ground work for songs such as Kelis’s ‘Caught Out There’ (Ed – Released in the same year, a few months later), Destiny’s Child’s ‘Survivor’ and Beyoncé’s ‘Me, Myself And I’ and later ‘Best Thing I never Had’
It’s Not Right But It’s Okay
I Learnt From the Best
But it wasn’t all heartbreak and subsequent empowerment. Despite the leather-bound ice queen image, the old Whitney was still present on songs like this.
My Love is Your Love