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Whitney Houston Facts

American singer, actress, producer, and model

  • Whitney Elizabeth Houston was born on August 9, 1963 to John Russell Houston, Jr and Cissy Houston in Newark, New Jersey.
  • Her father was an Army serviceman and entertainment executive.
  • Her mother is a gospel singer.
  • Whitney's middle name was also the name of her grandmother.
  • She is part African, part Native American and part Dutch.
  • She is the third and youngest child in the family
  • Whitney Houston was raised a Baptist.
  • Her family moved to East Orange, New Jersey when she was four because of the 1967 Newark riots
  • Houston started performing at the age of 11 as a soloist in the junior gospel choir at the New Hope Baptist Church in Newark. Her first solo performance is "Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah" at the church
  • Houston attended the Mount Saint Dominic Academy, a Catholic girls high school. She met her best friend Robyn Crawford at this school.
  • In her teenage years, Whitney Houston toured nightclubs where her mother Cissy was performing.
  • At the age of 14, she became a backup singer on the Michael Zager Band.
  • Though, Houston was offered a contract, her mother declined it wanting Whitney to finish her schooling first.
  • Witney Houston signed a worldwide recording contract with Arista Records in 1983
  • She made her national televised debut on The Merv Griffin Show alongside Arista's head Clive Davis
  • Houston first recorded a duet entitled "Hold Me", which was released in 1984
  • Her debut album Whitney Houston was released in February 1985, for which she gained worldwide recognition
  • She was nominated for three Grammy Awards at the 1986 Grammy Awards. Her first Grammy win was for Best Pop Vocal Performance, Female for "Saving All My Love for You".
  • In the 1980's, Whitney Houston dated American football player Randall Cunningham and actor Eddie Murphy.
  • She met R&B singer Bobby Brown at the 1989 Soul Train Music Awards and they married on July 18, 1992
  • She gave several fashion photo shoots in the early 80s, many of which were for Seventeen Magazine. She also often contributed for the magazine.
  • In 1984, she appeared on the soap 'As The World Turns'.
  • She holds the Guinness World Record for being the most awarded female act of all time. Her awards include two Emmy Awards, six Grammy Awards, thirty Billboard Music Awards, twenty-two American Music Awards, among a total of 415 career awards as of 2010!
  • She is the only artist to chart seven consecutive No.1 Billboard Hot 100 hits.
  • She is the only female artist whose 3 albums sold for $3 million+ each. Those albums are: "Whitney Houston", "Whitney" and "The Bodyguard" OST.
  • Her favorite color is lavender.
  • Her favorite subject is History.
  • Her favorite house chore is vacuuming.
  • Her favorite actor is Jessica Lange.
  • In 1993, Houston gave birth to daughter Bobbi Kristina Houston Brown
  • Her first film role came in 1992 in The Bodyguard, co-starring Kevin Costner
  • Whitney Houston performed at a state dinner in the the White House in October 1994. The dinner is to honor the newly elected South African president Nelson Mandela
  • She later performed three concerts in South Africa to honor Mandela which were attended by over 200,000 people
  • Her struggle with drugs first surfaced in 2000, when airport security guards found marijuana in her and husband Bobby Brown's luggage at the Hawaii airport. They boarded the plane and departed before the authorities could arrive. Charges were later dropped.
  • In August 2001, Whitney Houston renewed contract for $100 million with Arista/BMG, the biggest record deal in music history.
  • Whitney Houston separated from Bobby Brown in September 2006. The divorce was finalized on April 24, 2007. She was granted custody of the couple's daughter.
  • She gave an interview to Oprah Winfrey, her first in seven years. The interview was billed as the most anticipated music interview of the decade. In the interview, she told Oprah that by 2006 doing drugs was an everyday thing.
  • Whitney Houston appeared in four movies in her career, The Bodyguard (1992), Waiting to Exhale (1995), The Preacher's Wife (1996) and Sparkle (2012)
  • Whitney Houston was found dead at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California. She was in the hotel to attend the 2012 Grammy Awards. She was declared dead at 3:55 pm by the paramedics who found the singer unresponsive when they arrived.
  • Her funeral was held on February 18, 2012 in Newark, NJ. Her ex-husband, Bobby Brown briefly appeared at her funeral before leaving becuase he and his children are repeatedly told to move to the back seats.
  • In April 2012, the Beverly Hills police say they have concluded her death investigation and found no signs that a crime occurred.
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