In honor of Whitney Houston’s 60th birthday, here are my favorite Whitney songs
Written by B87FM on August 9, 2023
Editor’s note: The following article is an op-ed, and the views expressed are the author’s own. Read more opinions on theGrio.
I am a proud member of Generation X, and I think I can speak for all of us when I say Whitney Houston was a prominent voice for our generation ever since the release of her eponymous album in 1985.
I was a few months shy of my 14th birthday when I heard that album, and every song on it was a hit.
You couldn’t attend a graduation in the early ’80s without hearing a class full of children or teenagers singing “Greatest Love of All.” You couldn’t escape her on the radio — not that we wanted to.
Once she came on the scene, she commanded it. She was the gold standard, and everyone who came after was compared to her. She was the voice and the visuals, baby.
Today, Aug. 9, would have been her 60th birthday, and in honor of the occasion, I want to list my favorite Whitney Houston songs.
Let’s be clear that this is a list of my favorites. Your list may differ, and that is totally OK. We don’t have to argue about it because she really never missed.
I present this list in no particular order because in my mind they are all No. 1.
“You Give Good Love”
This is one of those songs sung into a hairbrush microphone as you stand in front of a mirror. It was actually the first single released on her first album, and it was an instant hit. Her voice is so pure here.
“Saving All My Love For You”
Whitney was obviously singing this song to a married man. She was rumored to have had an affair with Jermaine Jackson (who also wrote songs on her first album), and as the rumor goes, this song was dedicated to him. There is an equally wild rumor that his response to this song was his hit single “Don’t Take It Personal,” but these are just rumors as far as I am concerned, and we really just need to focus on how Whitney was giving melodic begging and pleading on this song.
“I Have Nothing”
Being able to belt this out at karaoke without missing a note or being pitchy is one of my life’s goals. I’m not there yet, but hopefully I will be. This song is just perfect.
“Run To You”
It’s safe to say that “The Bodyguard” soundtrack was some of Nippy’s best work ever. This song is no exception.
“I Will Always Love You”
If ever there was a case of taking a cover of someone else’s song and making it their own, this is it. Whitney Houston took a Dolly Parton classic (and we love us some Dolly, our unproblematic fave!) and made everyone forget Dolly ever sang it. When you think of this song, you think of Whitney, and that’s no diss to our beloved Dolly; it’s just a fact of how this went down.
“My Love Is Your Love”
This is a good song, but if I’m honest, the reason I really love it is because you can hear a little Bobbi Kristina say “Sing mommy” at the beginning of it, and it melts my heart every single time.
“All At Once”
This song makes me want to cry. Does it make you want to cry? The combination of her pleading voice and the sad lyrics make me want to cry every single time I hear it, and I will stay playing it on repeat because it’s that good.
“I’m Every Woman”
This is another one of those great covers that I love. Now, she didn’t outdo Chaka’s original, but that’s OK because Whitney’s version came to do what it was supposed to do, and we all loved it. Also, she actually shouts Chaka out in the adlibs, and yes, hunty.
I just realized that I could put every single Whitney Houston song on this list because they are all my favorites, but if I make this list any longer, my editor will probably kill me, so your turn.
What are your favorite Whitney Houston jams? I wanna know.
Monique Judge is a storyteller, content creator and writer living in Los Angeles. She is a word nerd who is a fan of the Oxford comma, spends way too much time on Twitter, and has more graphic t-shirts than you. Follow her on Twitter @thejournalista or check her out at moniquejudge.com.
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