Whitney Houston a legend - Cowell

2012-02-12 07:42
Los Angeles - Pop legend Whitney Houston, who was found dead on Saturday, was the vocal star of a generation whose soaring voice broke records and inspired millions of fans before substance abuse sent her on a downward spiral.

"She was a legend. These people don't come around often," British television host and producer Simon Cowell, of American Idol and Britain's Got Talent fame, told CNN television. "No one could sell a song like Whitney."

She was a trailblazers who proved that a female artist could dominate the pop market, Cowell said.

With a ferociously powerful voice and a dazzling range, Houston achieved stardom as a pop-soul singer known as "the Voice" and the "Queen of Pop" in the 1980s and 1990s.

Her fantastic success - and that of fellow pop icon Michael Jackson - was propelled by a brand new device at the time: The pop music video.


Houston's trove of six Grammy awards included one for record of the year - for a soaring cover of Dolly Parton's I Will Always Love You, and another for album of the year for The Bodyguard.

She later parlayed her stardom to acting success appearing in hit movies like Waiting to Exhale and The Bodyguard, co-starring Kevin Costner.

From a musical family that included mother Cissy Houston, a gospel star, and Dionne Warwick, her cousin, Whitney Houston started out as a teen model and then made a dazzling segue to music.

Her hits included How Will I Know, Saving all My Love for You, and I Will Always Love You, a Dolly Parton cover that Houston made her own megahit.

As a performer, Houston earned a reputation as a regal diva, but not without merit.

"She was entitled to be a diva... when you've got that much talent," star-spotter Cowell added.

She also was a trailblazing African-American beauty, a teen model who became the first black cover girl on Seventeen magazine.

Houston sold more than 170 million records worldwide but suffered a major career setback after admitting drug use during an abusive relationship with ex-husband Bobby Brown.

And while her fans kept waiting for more recovery and a bigger comeback, Houston broke some hearts with her passing.

"I am absolutely devastated by this news. I'm so sad for her," said Cowell, known for his normally rough edges.

"She was undoubtedly one of the greatest superstars of all time. One of the greatest voices, you know, in our lifetime we're likely to ever hear," Cowell said.

"And to hear this news, it's really, really upset me."


  • Gugulethu Proud-Unplugged Dladla - 2012-02-12 08:53

    This is a tragedy of note! the music industry will never be the same. talk about losing a shero in music! :-(

      michael.liebenberg - 2012-02-12 09:25

      True to your name... Unplugged... FROM REALITY.......

  • Dieter - 2012-02-12 08:57

    everyone knew houston had a problem!

      Mike - 2012-02-12 10:30

      And nobody did a thing to help

  • Moeketsi Samuel Mokhele - 2012-02-12 09:19

    May soul R. I. P. we have lost the superstar

  • siya.xashimba - 2012-02-12 09:26


  • Andre - 2012-02-12 09:28

    This just another confirmation that drug lords, pedlars and mules deserve the maximum penalty. They are murderers!

  • Cebisile - 2012-02-12 09:51

    there are some rude people here not respecting other peoples beliefs. i can believe what i want and i know its the truth. i did not disrespect you

      Marlene - 2012-02-12 10:06

      Of course u can believe what u want, Cebisile. That is your right. But why would u want to believe something that is so obviously untrue? Kevin Costner is an actor. Whitney Houston is a singer and an actor. They both starred in a movie together. He was never her bodyguard in reality It was just a role he played. Do u believe the movie was based on facts? If so, I am telling u, it was just a fiction story. Research it if u really want to know the truth. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Bodyguard My condolences to Whitney's family and friends.

      John - 2012-02-12 10:48

      Cebisile, Movies are made for people like you and if you find that Bodyguard movie is the one that inspires a true love, belive on this. I wish you one day the man next to you to be the one that can take bullet for you. Yov'e got my best sympathy. Keep belive in.

  • brionyl.french - 2012-02-12 10:00

    Melanie Amaro from Xfactor should do a tribute she i believe could do it real justice.

      John - 2012-02-12 10:52

      Never seen a singer like Melanie Amaro before. That girl is a real star!

  • Shaun - 2012-02-12 10:20


      michael.liebenberg - 2012-02-12 14:01

      What was her favorite song??? No woman no cry... No dagga no fly?????

      John - 2012-02-13 08:22

      Engineer Michael Liebenberg has spoken. How is your spanish fat boy? Im sure that mariachi music is your favorite now after meysi-meysi....hahahaha

  • Lavida Koekemoer - 2012-02-12 10:24

    There is no perfect person walking on earth....we all have our mistakes....unfortunately some mistakes r worse Dan others...askis mama Whitney u will b loved even in absence...R.I.P mama Houston

  • Charmaine - 2012-02-12 10:40

    Some comments here.. Oh well, to each his or her own. Sad news indeed, Fans will miss her, but her Music will live on for generations to come. I always wished that I could sing like her. May Our Good Lord grant her Peace, and comfort to her loved ones at this time. Take your rest Whitney,we meet in heaven when the Rolls are called up yonder. Rest in Peace.

  • Ouklip - 2012-02-12 11:59

    Very talented lady, voice to fall in love with but she was only human. Whitney Houston, a beautiful woman with a singing voice. If only she could be convinced she was special and did not need any help. Drugs in any form harm more than help.

  • Gary - 2012-02-12 12:58

    May her soul rest in peace. We will miss so many things about you.

  • margaret.mead1 - 2012-02-13 10:32

    I agree with Simon Cowell. She is a great loss. Although in a way we "could see this coming",I was really hoping that her life wouldn't end in tragedy, like Michael Jackson and Amy Winehouse. It seems such a waste of exceptional talent.Whitney changed the pop music world with the style and power of her voice.She will be much missed.I am sad.My condolences.

  • lucinda.nagelwilliams - 2012-02-13 13:17

    Drugs, alcolhol,a messy marriage! That was not the way she started out. Choose to say whatever you may, but the world is mourning someone who was loved even until the day she died, even in the circumstances she died. Whitney I salute you!!!!! For the many young and older people you did inspire, for those who pursued their dreams, for those whom your life was an eye opener and for your love for music that was so contageous. I pray God granted you in those very last moments, beyond the human eye and understanding, the chance to be with Him in a better place...

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