When I woke up on Sunday morning a little bit of my youth had died!
In the early to mid 80s I was a new romantic with posters of Wham!, Duran Duran and Boy George on my walls. By the late 80's I had abandoned Spandau Ballet and Bucks Fizz and I was more likely to be found listening to The Smiths, Depeche Mode or Everything But the Girl.
By the early 90's it was Radiohead, Nirvana and All About Eve!
But all the time, underneath all this, I loved Motown, soul and R&B.
I always have. I always will.
I was never a great Whitney Houston fan. I had one of her albums on tape. It had "The Greatest Love of All" on it. I used to play that track over and over again. Apart from that she was a bit warbley for my taste. Give me her godmother Aretha Franklin or her cousin Dionne Warwick any day of the week.
I always appreciated her amazing talent though. I just thought she was a bit neutral. A bit vanilla. A goodie two shoes from the gospel churches of America. All trills and no guts.
Mind you I never liked Madonna when she first appeared on the scene!
Shows what I know!
It was a good job I never applied for a job as a music reviewer on Smash Hits magazine. I'd have been rubbish!
Of course any traces of being "pops swot" left the day she met Bobby Brown.
And that's when it all went wrong!
A concoction of drugs and alcohol took their toll and by the time she tried to make her comeback in 2009 she had knackered her voice and her looks.
I remember the ill fated X-Factor appearance when Dermot O'Leary had to rescue her dress from falling off and then try and interview this bizarre and quite clearly smacked off her tits woman.
I remember I took the piss. I felt sorry for Dermot. The press was full of it.
I loved the song though.
Because despite of everything that girl could sing!
I've just down loaded her Greatest Hits collection along with millions of others this week. I've got it on now and I realise something.
I was a fan. I just didn't know it.
I know every song. I know all the words. Each one reminds me of some point in my teenage years and early 20's. Fun times. Heartbreak. Going to see The Bodyguard at the pictures. I Will Always Love You being number for weeks and weeks and weeks! Splitting up. Getting back together. Smooching at the disco. Getting off with the boy you really, really liked.
The sound track to my youth.
Whitney Houston was only 6 years older than me. She had more talent in her little finger than I could ever hope to have.
Was she happy with all that talent, money and success?
God bless you Whitney and thank you. I hope you finally find happiness wherever you are.
We will always love you! xx
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