Whitney Elizabeth Houston was an American singer, songwriter and actress and one of the best selling artists of all time. She was born on August 9, 1963 in New Jersey to two time Grammy Award winner Cissy Houston. The legendary queen of soul, Aretha Franklin, was her godmother. Whitney Houston began singing from an early age by joining in the local choir at the New Hope Baptist Church. By the age of 11 she was singing solo at the choir and also learned to play the piano. In her teens, she performed as a backup singer for Chaka Khan’s song “I’m Every Woman” as well as other performances with Lou Rawls and Jermaine Jackson. She also worked as a model and appeared in several magazines such as Vogue, Glamour, Cosmopolitan and even the cover of Seventeen magazine, one of the first African American women to be featured on a magazine cover.
During one of her nightclub performances in New York, Clive Davis of Arista Records was so impressed that he immediately offered her a singing contract. The album had a budget of $250,0000, which was a lot to gamble on an unknown artist. The album was released in 1985 and was a huge success. It was titled “Whitney Houston” and included hit singles such as “Saving All My Love for You” for which she won a Grammy in 1986. The album reached the top of the charts and stayed there for 14 weeks. It was also the first album by a woman to have three No. 1 hits.
The success of her first album was soon matched by the even bigger success of her second album, titled “Whitney” released in 1987. It went platinum several times and gave her the honor of being the first woman in music history to debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart, as well as to enter the charts at No. 1 in both the U.S. and UK. With this album, she now had a total of 7 consecutive No. 1 hits, breaking the previous record of six hits by The Beatles and Bee Gees. She was nominated for 3 Grammy Awards in 1988 and won the award for “Best Female Pop Vocal Performance” for her song “I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves