Separate names with a comma.
Discussion in 'Icons From The Past' started by happycanadian, Oct 27, 2005.
in HQ she looks absolutely FLAWLESS.
that first picture! unreal. she hasn't looked this beautiful in ... wow. probably a bloody DECADE. amazing.
THANK YOU!! KARMA!!
p.s. my avatar is her new album cover!! wooooot!!
another pic from inside the event!
Wow she looks GOOD! So refreshing to see her looking so healthy and well out together. Can't wait for her cd to drop.
That album cover is sooo gorgeous! It looks like a queen who's ready to take her throne back! Her style is superb!
TOTALLY agree, MON!
she's just such a Diva!
here's a pic from her exclusive Listening Party in LA a couple nights ago.
She is looking so healthy lately. I'm so glad she's making her comeback
Whitney's "I LOOK TO YOU": In Her Own Words
In the twenty-five years since she recorded her history-making debut album,
Whitney Houston has become a superstar, a legend, an icon. One of the bestselling
female artists of all time, she has sold over 140 million albums
worldwide. She has been cited as an influence by the likes of Mariah Carey,
Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Hudson, and Leona Lewis, and last year, Rolling
Stone listed Houston as one of the “100 Greatest Singers of All Time.”
But when her longtime mentor Clive Davis, currently Chief Creative Officer of
Sony Music Entertainment Worldwide, first approached her about recording
her first album since 2002’s Just Whitney, Houston didn’t think that she
wanted to get back in the game.
“When Clive called me and said, ‘Are you ready?,’ I said, ‘Ready for what?,’” she
Fortunately, though, Davis was persistent—and the result, almost three years
later, is the remarkable new album I Look to You. The disc matches Houston
with some of the hottest writers and producers in pop and R&B (including R.
Kelly, David Foster, Akon, Stargate, Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz) for a set of
songs full of her signature vocal power and passion. The album is built on a
strong message of survival and perseverance, and reflects the hard-earned
lessons of the high-profile personal challenges Houston has encountered in
A key song for the project was “Nothin’ But Love,” a propulsive dance groove
co-produced by Fernando Garibay (Britney Spears, Lady GaGa). “If there was
anything I wanted to say after some of the things I had gone through,” Houston
says, “it was that I had nothing but love, regardless of the situation. Maybe
that’s just the way I was raised, or maybe I had just gotten to the point of, it’s
all behind me now and I’m moving forward.”
Davis, the album’s Co-Producer, brought R. Kelly’s composition “I Look to You”
to Houston, and her reaction was instant—though she hadn’t been given all the
information. “I heard the song, and I loved that it was so short and sweet,” she
says. “And then I got to Chicago, and Robert told me there was still another
verse to write and a bridge! So he stood there with me in the studio and wrote
the second verse right off the top of his head. He closed his eyes, we kinda
leaned on each other. As he was singing, I was praying, and the words just
The song (one of two Kelly contributed; he also delivered the defiantly funky
“Salute“) would go on to give the album its title, and she credits Davis with
understanding what the lyrics would mean to her. “When Clive heard ‘I Look to
You,’ because he knows my background in gospel, he knew that song would
put it all in check for me,” she says.
The relationship between Houston and Davis goes all the way back to 1983,
when he signed the young artist to Arista Records. He oversaw the development
and marketing of her thirteen-million-selling debut, Whitney Houston. After all
these years, he remains so close to the singer that she refers to him as “my
father in the industry.”
“Clive and I are partners,” says Houston. “He still loves music, still loves lyrics
and melodies. He’s one of the few people who still has that gift of knowing what
song fits with what voice. Clive is able to go beyond the personality and see
what’s inside a person, what really motivates them.”
“To be reunited with Whitney is so fulfilling,” adds Davis. “The album provides
the most exciting challenge I’ve ever had and whatever happens, I know it’s
very special. Its music and her voice will once again impact millions all over the
world for many years to come.”
Even with a few strong songs in motion, though, Houston still wasn’t sure that
she had found the direction she was looking for. Surprisingly, it’s the most
light-hearted moment on I Look to You—the disco-flavored roller-skating jam
“Million Dollar Bill“—which she considers the turning point.
“I worked with Alicia Keys on that one,” she says, “and it was probably the
most fun, but it also felt like I was working with someone who understood me,
who could relate to me, singer to singer. At that point, I knew that it was
coming together, that this was the album that I wanted, and that it was going
to get done after two-and-a-half years in the making.”
Akon, another 21st-century hitmaker joined forces with Houston for “Like I
Never Left.” She notes that the singer was a favorite among the friends of her
daughter, Bobbi Kristina; “they all had his songs as their ring tones,” she says.
Houston praises the “island feel” of Akon’s work, and adds that when she heard
“Like I Never Left,” she thought, “that sounds like it could be an album title for
Perhaps the most memorable recording session came on the powerhouse ballad
“I Didn’t Know My Own Strength,” written by Diane Warren. The song reunited
Houston with producer David Foster, who worked with her on the
incomparable soundtrack to the 1992 film The Bodyguard, one of the biggestselling
albums in history. Foster’s home was damaged in the Malibu fires of
2007, and when Houston came in to record her vocal, he was working out of a
“Basically, I recorded in an office, next to the bathroom, with some sheets up
near the microphone,” she says. “It was totally different from doing ‘I Will
Always Love You’ in a beautiful studio, or ‘I Learned From the Best’ in David’s
beautiful home. But when I listened to my vocal, it was real, it was
passionate—which is most unusual when you’re singing next to a bathroom!
“I wasn’t thinking only in terms of myself,” she continues. “I was thinking
about other people and other struggles. I thought about becoming a single
mother, I thought about my mother, my cousin Dionne, my sisters-in-law. I
thought about people with sicknesses, people who triumph in the face of
adversity. The simplicity and strength that came out in my singing made me
know how strong that song could be for a lot of people.”
One of the most welcome elements of I Look to You is hearing Houston
reconnecting with the dance floor and delivering uptempo songs with finesse
and joy. Even the album’s lone cover—Leon Russell’s immortal “A Song For
You,” which has been recorded by greats from Ray Charles to the Carpenters to
Donny Hathaway—begins at its traditional, stately pace but then breaks out
into a celebratory, irresistible club beat.
Houston says that she enjoyed bringing that side of her singing out again, but
that her heart will always be with the slower, more emotional numbers. “I love
the uptempo songs, but I’m a balladeer,” she says. “I can take a ballad and it
gets in my heart, and I can understand where it’s coming from.”
Most of all, Whitney Houston believes that she is a link in a chain of vocal
tradition, and that I Look to You is one more extension of the sounds she was
raised with. “I hope that the gospel tradition in my voice—which is just my
soul—that it comes out, and that it is heard and felt by those who come after
In Stores & Online August 31st!
I got the album today...it's just , a great concise mixture of vulnerable ballads and confident club tracks
the reviews are in and they're great!!!!
Whitney Houston's voice, emotion lift new 'I Look to You' Updated 3d 3h ago | Comments 46 | Recommend 24 E-mail | Save | Print | Reprints & Permissions | Enlarge
Whitney Houston sixth studio album, I Look to You, is her first since Just Whitney in 2002. The new album recaptures the magic that made her a star.
By Steve Jones, USA TODAY
Near the end of her new album, I Look to You (* * * ½ out of four), Whitney Houston declares, "Don't call it a comeback/I've been here for years." She certainly sounds strong, confident and ready for the well-orchestrated return that has been building for months — and fully equipped to dispel lingering concerns that she no longer has the pipes.
The singer's sixth studio album — out Monday but streaming now on her website — is her first since 2002's Just Whitney and best since 1998's My Love Is Your Love. It's loaded with tunes that are perfect for recapturing the magic that once made her a transcendent star. Executive producer Clive Davis helped stack the deck in her favor with a raft of A-list songwriters and producers, including Alicia Keys, Johntà Austin, Diane Warren, R. Kelly, Nate "Danja" Hills, Akon, Harvey Mason Jr., Swizz Beatz and David Foster.
They provide her with beats and lyrics befitting someone making a fresh start, and Houston, 46, makes the most of it. She clearly hasn't forgotten how to sing, imbuing the material with emotional power without a lot of overly dramatic vocal runs.
To her credit, Houston doesn't apologize or wallow in pity for the tabloid-chronicled personal problems that derailed her career, but instead strives to shake off and rise above the muck. On several occasions, she addresses her troubles but finds the inner resolve to overcome them.
"I could hold onto the pain, but that ain't what my life's about," she sings on Nothin' But Love. On I Didn't Know My Own Strength, she declares, "I wasn't built to break."
This is not a woman crying about her bad luck but one who fell hard, pulled herself up and discovered she wasn't as fragile as she may have thought. And though she never mentions ex-husband Bobby Brown by name, the Kelly-written closing kiss-off Salute surely could be aimed in his direction.
Returning to her classic sound, Houston should have no trouble reconnecting with those longtime fans who will always love her. Whether her more contemporary collaborators can help her engage a new generation of fans and radio programmers remains to be seen. But she can hope, at least, that fans will feel as she does on her duet with Akon and react Like I Never Left.
from the Chicago Sun Times
Whitney Houston in strong voice, upbeat mood on comeback
August 26, 2009
BY JIM DeROGATIS Pop Music Critic
</p> WHITNEY HOUSTON
‘I Look to You’
</div> Ask most kids today if they’re aware of Houston’s musical accomplishments — the record-breaking string of multiplatinum hits, including the 1993 cover of “I Will Always Love You,” one of the biggest singles of all time — and they’ll probably say, “Hell to the no!” They’re more likely to react to a Monica Lewinsky joke.
The personal turmoil isn’t Houston’s biggest comeback challenge, however; everyone loves a good redemption story. The real hurdle is that 25 years after musical impresario Clive Davis took a girl from Newark, N.J., and struck gold with the formula of soaring, virtuosic vocals delivered over soft, cushy, melodramatic pillows of smoother-than-smooth backing tracks, the prime vehicle for peddling such sounds has long since shifted to the “American Idol” universe.
It’s probably a given that older fans who haven’t had a Whitney fix since the disappointing “Just Whitney” in 2002 will embrace her long-awaited sixth album, “I Look to You,” which arrives in stores on Tuesday. But for Houston to reclaim her diva crown and superstar status, she also needs to appeal to those younger listeners.
To this end, executive producer Davis recruited some of the biggest names in hip-hop and R&B to handle the knob-twirling and songwriting — Swizz Beatz, R. Kelly, Alicia Keys, Akon, Stargate, Diane Warren and David Foster included — at a cost that no doubt tops the annual expenditures of many small nations. Then he tinkered with it all for nearly two years: The disc initially was set for release in late 2007.
Million Dollar Bill - Whitney Houston
The first thing that strikes you when listening to “I Look to You” is that despite all of those stylistically diverse egos in the kitchen, “I Look to You” doesn’t sound overcooked at all: The sound throughout is clean, modern, unfettered and consistently designed to keep the focus on Houston’s singing, whether it’s on the moderately bouncing club tracks (which lean toward old-school house rather than modern electro) or the requisite ballads (Kelly pares things down to little more than a grand piano and vocals on the two tracks he helms). The only time things stray from this goal is during a pointless duet with Akon on “Like I Never Left.”
The second thing that hits you is that Houston’s singing is still incredibly powerful — a sublime mix of gospel purity, pop prissiness and bedroom purr. True, there are no spectacular key changes and show-stopping leaps to her highest register; these days, when Houston stretches for those impossible notes, she does so much more gingerly. But the lack of octave-spanning trilling actually is an improvement in my book, which always favors emotional expression over rote displays of technical ability.
As for the emotions Houston is expressing, the theme of weathering hard times and coming out the better for them runs through all 11 tracks, including the cover of Leon Russell’s “A Song for You.” (He’s no Dolly Parton, but it’s still a lovely tune in Houston’s hands.) As the singer said at one of her high-profile listening parties, “There are times in life when we go through certain situations — some not so good. You have to reach for a higher strength, you have to reach deep inside yourself, spend time with yourself to make some corrections that go beyond your own understanding and lean on a higher understanding.”
I look to you - Whitney Houston
Oprah viewers will of course swoon over the sounds and thoughts expressed in tracks such as the Kelly-helmed “Salute” (“So don’t call it a comeback, I’ve been here for years/Through all of the drama and the pain and all of the tears/It’s time to stop this roller coaster so that I can get off/And start moving mountains, swimming seas, and climbing over”) and the Warren-Foster power ballad “I Didn’t Know My Own Strength” (“I crashed down and I tumbled/But I did not crumble/I got through all the pain/I didn’t know my own strength/ Survived my darkest hour/My faith kept me alive/I picked myself back up/Hold my head up high”).
But my bet is that the “American Idol” crowd will connect with many of these tracks, too: They may not have struggled with divorce and rehab, but Houston’s just-hang-on histrionics speak just as movingly to that unrequited sophomore crush, and heartbreak is heartbreak, after all. Certainly anyone in need of tear-jerking ballads and uplifting groovers could do much worse on the current pop scene, and when our heroine croons, “I want you to love me like I never left,” she gives us plenty of reasons to heed her call.
New 'Look' for Whitney Houston
Album crafted as year's biggest comeback story
By STEVE CHAGOLLAN
Anybody looking to fashion a narrative for Whitney Houston on the eve of the release of her first album of new material in seven years need look no further than the songs on "I Look to You."With titles like "Million Dollar Bill," "Nothin' but Love," "Like I Never Left" and "I Didn't Know My Own Strength," themes of undying love, unyielding faith, triumph over adversity and defiance against the "doubters and the haters" point to an album (to be released Monday by Arista) custom-crafted to frame Houston as the year's biggest comeback story.
It won't be an easy task. Her last mainstream studio effort, 2002's "Just Whitney," peaked at No. 9 on Billboard's Top 200 current album chart, selling some 730,000 units. By contrast, Houston's last No. 1 album, the soundtrack for "The Bodyguard," topped the chart for 20 weeks in 1992-93 and sold 42 million discs, according to Gary Trust, charts manager for Billboard.
What "Just Whitney" didn't have was the careful, nurturing guidance of Clive Davis, who signed Houston to Arista in 1983 and has been behind her most successful recordings. Davis coaxed Houston out of semi-retirement with a phone call 3½ yeas ago. "I just said, 'It's time,' " Davis told Daily Variety. "I was getting so much mail literally from all over the world. People wanted their Whitney. They missed her; they missed what she stood for, and I just relayed that to her."
More than one option
(Co) Daily VarietyFilmography, Year, Role
(Co) Daily Variety
As he did with her first album -- "Whitney Houston" (1985), which topped the Billboard 200 chart for 14 consecutive weeks, making it the bestselling debut album by a female artist -- Davis spent more than 2½ years compiling material for the new package designed to best showcase her talents. "What we have tried to stand for is great songs done by a great vocalist," he said. "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."
Songwriters and producers on the disc include proven hitmakers like Alicia Keys, R. Kelly, Diane Warren and David Foster. It includes a mix of uptempo numbers, power ballads, dance grooves, the proverbial duet and even a classic cover, Leon Russell's "A Song for You." The album has been the centerpiece of a carefully calibrated campaign by the label dating back to June, when a timer on Houston's official website, Whitneyhouston.com, began counting the days, hours and minutes leading up to the album's launch. It could also be seen as the countdown to the relaunch of Houston's career.
Despite her chart-busting success in the 1980s and '90s, Houston's star has dimmed in the new millennium amid rumors of substance abuse, flighty behavior and a tumultuous marriage to singer Bobby Brown that ended in divorce in 2006.The slow build for "I Look to You" began in earnest at Clive Davis' annual pre-Grammy party in February, when Houston followed perfs by Barry Manilow, Jennifer Hudson and the Kings of Leon with a closing medley in front of a packed house of pop royalty and rising stars, including Paul McCartney, Prince, Quincy Jones, Babyface, Taylor Swift, Rihanna and Katy Perry.
"She came on after midnight," Davis recalled, in front of a room full of "gilt-edged, class-A celebrities. Everybody stayed." Jamie Foxx reportedly shouted, "She killed it!"
In July, Davis hosted a trio of listening sessions for the new album in London, New York and L.A. that were designed to reintroduce the singer to the public. Invitees included "tastemakers, industry people, radio sales, critics and music writers," said Scott Seviour, senior VP marketing and artist development, RCA Music Group. As at Davis' party, the celeb quotient was high at all three events, including Martha Stewart, Dionne Warwick and Diane Sawyer (to whom Houston uttered the infamous "crack is whack" remark in a 2002 interview) in New York and Stevie Wonder and Jane Fonda in L.A.
Two singles were released on the airwaves last week, "I Look to You," targeting the urban marketplace, and "Million Dollar Bill," sent to Top 40 radio. There was also a free giveaway of the title track to anyone who visited Whitneyhouston.com last week between Tuesday and Friday. On Monday, the album became available as an official stream on Houston's website.
Online previews of the album have been mixed but largely positive, with the L.A Times describing Houston's vocals as "more brawny than soaring these days." USA Today declared the disc "worth the wait."
Seviour said the label plans on shipping 600,000-700,000 units to retailers. "If this was five years ago, we'd probably be shipping 1.3 million records," he said. "But because digital is such a variable, and it's unlimited, the (shipping) number doesn't look that big." Since both Seviour and Davis see the album as loaded with singles potential, digital downloads could make up for less-than-stellar disc sales.
With No. 1 debuts over the course of 2009 mostly in the low six-digit range, industry watchers are keeping a close eye on the album's opening salvo. Eminem's "Relapse" has been the only album to breach a half million in sales (608,000) during the calendar year, with U2 the next closest at 484,000, according to Trust. The last artist to top a million was Lil Wayne in June 2008, said Trust. There are currently no plans for Houston to tour, and the label, with the help of PMK-HBH, is limiting Houston's exposure to a few key TV appearances for now. Houston will perform Sept. 1 on "Good Morning America," which has been trumpeting the singer's appearance for weeks, and she'll also be on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," which will devote the entire hour to the singer on Sept. 14.
"I'm sure that she will have more live engagements," said Davis, "but I'm more interested in her doing these shows. When she does television engagements, you're talking about reaching millions of people, not 15,000. She's really more akin to Streisand than she is a rock artist. You're not going to get Whitney Houston doing one-nighters."
Questions regarding Houston's health and stamina, or whether she has anything to prove, were brushed aside by Davis. "I'm not trying to sugarcoat anything," he assured, "but she did speak at length at those presentations. And don't forget she did perform at my Grammy party last February."
As to whether Houston's career can thrive in today's pop paradigm, Davis -- who has a hand in reviving and reinventing the careers of Carlos Santana and Rod Stewart -- underscored Houston's timeless appeal. "She's in the tradition of Ella Fitzgerald, Lena Horne, Billie Holiday, Aretha Franklin, Streisand -- there are just a handful who are the voices of all time. Plus, she looks great."
I heard that she will be on the first new episode of Oprah this season.
yes, she certainly will!
Whitney Houston is coming to Oprah Winfrey's famous couch.
The Grammy Award-winning singer, 46, whose much-anticipated upcoming album, I Look to You will be released Aug. 31, will sit down with the talk show queen for her first interview in almost seven years.
Calling it "the most anticipated music interview of the decade," Winfrey, 55, will welcome Houston as her first guest on the The Oprah Winfrey Show's 24th season, which airs Sept. 14.
Houston held listening parties for her album in L.A., N.Y.C. and London. The CD is her seventh studio album and marks a comeback after a seven-year hiatus from the business.
AAAAAAAND she's on the cover of the October issue of Ebony. and she looks absolutely amazing!
Filed under: Whitney Houston
Whitney Houston graces the cover of the new issue of Ebony.
What else can we say but….
Permalink / 42 comments (RSS) / Forward this post »
Whitney Houston performs for ABC's Good Morning America in Central Park Sept 1st 2009