June 4th, 2009
12:52 PM ET

The return of Whitney

The press release e-mail had a subject line we hadn't seen for awhile: "Whitney Houston Album Set For Release."  Sure, she performed at Clive Davis' pre-Grammy party in February, but of course the talk the next day was about Chris Brown and Rihanna, not Whitney.  So she's been out of the limelight for awhile... and that's not necessarily a bad thing.

The typically breathless prose of the press release was more or less on target - "she has built an illustrious career that has generated over 170 million combined worldwide sales of albums, singles and videos...  Cited by the Guinness Book of World Records as music’s most awarded female artist of all time" - but of course, just as notable was what it didn't mention: her tumultuous marriage and divorce from Bobby Brown, the drug and alcohol problems, and how the whole bizarre train wreck played out on a TV reality series.  The show may have been called "Being Bobby Brown," but let's face it - being Whitney Houston has always been much more fascinating.

So what do you think?  When you hear "Whitney," what comes to mind: the Grammy-winning diva with the incredible vocal range and golden voice, or the near-skeletal drug abuser who uttered such immortal lines as "Crack is whack"?  Will you rush out to grab the new disc when it drops September 1?  The press release calls Houston "a singular force in music today" - yes or no?

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soundoff (30 Responses)
  1. lam

    If Whitney was a male rock and roll star would people continue to say she is washed up because she has an addiction? No they would be patting her on the back giving her accolades because she conquered her demons and moved on with her life. I saw Whitney in concert many years ago and she took my breath away. I loved every minute of her show. I can't wait for her new CD to come out. This is one fan that is in her corner. I have missed you Whitney, Welcome Back!!!!

    June 5, 2009 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Laura Braun

    Like her lifestyle choices or not, Whitney Houston's talent is unmatched.

    June 5, 2009 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  3. raysgirl

    SING Whitney!!!! We've been waiting too long.

    June 5, 2009 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
  4. jcd

    a fair commentary. those are the facts folks.

    June 5, 2009 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Timmdogg

    "Misery loves company"

    June 5, 2009 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  6. Tracy

    I hope that she will show all of her critics, non-believers and doubters that she still has the talent to deliver a number one hit. I can't wait to hear from her. Best luck Whitney.

    June 5, 2009 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  7. Shon

    Um, your article is unnecessarily NEGATIVE and bitter sounding. Did Whitney step on your toes in the past or something? No need to be so negative. The woman hasn't been on drugs for years and divorced Bobby Brown years ago and hasn't been in the headlines for doing anything NEGATIVE or WHACKY for quite some time. Cut the woman some slack!! She's the greatest voice of our generation and no matter what anyone thinks of her, NO ONE will surpass her peak or accomplish what she has in the past. Welcome back Whitney, we missed you!!!!!

    June 5, 2009 at 1:24 am | Report abuse |
  8. ceci

    I'll wait for the first two singles and make my decision. We're in a recession and she won't get my $10 off of GP!

    June 4, 2009 at 10:56 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Amos

    I think that it is wonderful to have such a talented lady back. I know that I have certainly missed her beautiful voice. All of us have our demons to contend with, some just get the privilege of doing so privately. Welcome back Whitney and may God continue to bless you.

    June 4, 2009 at 9:33 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Eric

    Dear Mr. David Daniel
    As Senior Editior one would think that you could recognize the talents of Ms. Houston and treat the press release accordingly. Unfortunately,
    you have lowered yourself to writing an article that is in step with the National Enquirer. When did CNN start hiring gossip journalists?? If this article is an example of your writing, you are in the wrong place. The well respected journalists of CNN would be appalled at this blatant example of tabloid journalism. Many artists have had drug problems over the years and have had illustrious comebacks. May we all look to the future and wish Ms.Houston the best. Their is enough Negativity in the world without CNN adding to it. If you are unable to recognize a true talent with the obvious potential for a stupendous comeback, then i suggest you stay away from the entertainment field and maybe think about writing for Field and Stream.

    I for one, and excited and anticipating Whitney Houston's new album, and will purchase it.

    (and by the way, I am a professional singer!)

    June 4, 2009 at 9:30 pm | Report abuse |




    June 4, 2009 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Gel

    I welcome anyone in the "music" industry who can actually sing. In a time when most "singers" have to constantly prance around half dressed so that you don't realize they are not actually able to carry a tune she will be a welcome change. Nothing against the other performers, but even my voice can be digitally enhanced and I definitely don't have the gift of song; regardless, there is room for everyone. Unfortunately, this article is extremely negative and to what end? The list of creative people who were plagued by addictions is endless and honestly it takes more than Whitney to keep the cartels in business. As a concert goer, I appreciate it when the artist can actually belt out a melodic tune. I wish her every success and hope that she steers clear of negative people who do not wish her well. Whitney, do your thing and I for one will purchase your new CD. Hopefully, there will be articles providing an objective review of her work that don't only focus on her trials and tribulations - who among us can withstand that scrutiny for 40+ years? Live and let live...

    June 4, 2009 at 7:30 pm | Report abuse |
  13. edie

    Who cares about thinasty ghetto trash?She's so over. And we're so over her.

    June 4, 2009 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Jose Larralde

    If the music is good, of course I will buy her cd.

    June 4, 2009 at 7:22 pm | Report abuse |
  15. lmuir

    just saw the headline on the cnn homepage....haven't we been there, done that??? Whitney is yesterday's new...boring.

    June 4, 2009 at 7:03 pm | Report abuse |
  16. june

    I've always thought Whitney Houston had a beautiful voice and I hope that the drugs have not harmed her vocal cords. I hope she is back, the music industry needs her. There are not too many voices out there that can really sing. Sure, they can sing w/loud instruments in the background overshadowing the singer or when they are in the recording studio, the background enhancers that make the singer sound like they have a great voice but once they are on stage in front of a live audience, they lip-sync...Ms. Jackson, Britney, but why am I even comparing those two or mentioning them with a singer like Whitney Houston when they don't come close. Whitney, do your THANG and come back around. You are the only one that can blow the National Anthem. But I must admit Jennifer Hudson wasn't bad at all.

    June 4, 2009 at 6:29 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Monique

    I think she is going to come out on top. Maybe not in the position she wants cause the damage is done and it is a new day and age. But look at "Heart-Break Hotel" She had two other chicks on there who were (a the time) the baddest in the game (Faith and Kelly Price). And it was a hit! As long as she has great producers and engineers and some HONEST people around her she will be fine! Whitney can SANG! Just stop proclaiming Bobby as the king of R&B! That's just crazy talk!

    June 4, 2009 at 5:49 pm | Report abuse |
  18. c

    sure she did some stupid things, but she went to rehab, cleaned up beautifully, and has laid low...she is deserving of this comeback, she is genuine talent..
    .unlike britney spears, boo-who about media leaving her alone, then her downward sprial, divorce, then partying w/ paris, among other things,including the 2007 vma comeback that she fluffed off..and now has a 2nd comeback??she should have been more focused on the "first" one w/ the blackout album.. she needs to go away,take care of her kids,and make room for someone more deserving/ whitneys time to shine now. i wish whitney well and the sucess she deserves. keep it up.

    June 4, 2009 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
  19. jeff

    Even on a bad day she sounds better than most. I think I would buy her CD

    June 4, 2009 at 4:42 pm | Report abuse |
  20. LBW

    A real voice is a real voice. I am tickled to hear that she is producing records again. She can sing acappella. I don't think Britney or Madonna can do that. So many of today's artists are over produced and if the power goes out, they can't perform. She can. Good for you Whitney.

    June 4, 2009 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Jeffrey

    I believe she will come back better than ever... She will always be a STAR in my eyes.
    We all have had set backs in life. And She will prove all of those no believers wrong.

    You go Whitney!!!!

    June 4, 2009 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Welcome Back w/Open Arms

    With the music selection we have today – Her sound will be a blessing. Wecome Back Whitney

    June 4, 2009 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Ms. Charlie

    I am so glad that we still have some loyal whitney fans. She used drugs people, she didn't commit murder!!!!To all of the haters. She did the same thing many people do everyday but don't have the strength or the support to fight back. I applaud her and am dying to go and buy the new album. And as far as one of the comments I read about all the new talent she has to compete with, some of these young ladies out here today couldn't hold a note next to Whitney when she was smoking crack!!!!!How do u like those apples??????

    June 4, 2009 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
  24. manuel

    I think the damage is done. The world now sees her as ghetto.

    June 4, 2009 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  25. TheTruth

    Well, they are promoting her new music, not her past troubles. So the press release was appropriate. I am so excited for this and will definitely be buying a copy! I hope she sells millions!!!!

    June 4, 2009 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
  26. DA

    Wow, what a negative article...what did Whitney do to you???

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought the American public loved a comeback story. Whitney has set the standard for what a true vocalist should be. Her trials and tribulations are clearly behind her, and the effort it takes to mount the showbiz horse and ride again is extremely commendable.

    How about just wishing her well and letting the past be the past? I guess your Cheerios didn't have the normal flavor this morning?

    June 4, 2009 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
  27. robin

    She was a talented , beautiful woman when she first started in the business and I hope that she will overcome her obstacles and once again wow us with her talent. Good Luck Whitney. Your true fans love you !!!

    June 4, 2009 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |

    She's been so long out of the musically relevant scene that no amount of Clive Davis pull is going to bring her career back from the brink of death. She cannot compete with the Ladies that have filled the void since she's chosen to stay in exile (as it were).

    She can only hope for a small piece of the success that she once had...and this cd/digital release had better be smokin' hot...because the last round of music she pushed onto the public was so totally worthless as to be erased from time itself!

    June 4, 2009 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Zach

    Whitney hasn't been on drugs in years. She went to rehab in 2006 and has been clean ever since. Heck, her Addiction Counselor is still occassionaly spotted with her, CLEARLY indicating that she is dedicated to her sobriety. So why is there any need to dig in the mud and bring up the past? It's over with. It's done. This is a new day.

    June 4, 2009 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Luis

    Her voice is amazing as well as her albums. And that's all that really should matter! Let's move on and hope that she is doing good in her life instead of reminding us of her troubled past. It's her music we love

    June 4, 2009 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |

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