Whitney Houston Dies: The Tragic Loss of a Music Icon

English: Whitney Houston talking to the audien...

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In life, there are two types of tragedies. The first is usually caused by illness and the second is sudden triggered by an accident, an event or some other factor. In the case of Whitney Houston, sudden is precisely the way to describe her untimely death. The cause of her death remains under investigation. She was found in her room at the Beverly Hills Hilton on Saturday, February 11.

I’ve never been a huge fan of R&B; it’s simply not my primary choice of music to listen to. But Houston was a part of my childhood. Her voice was a main contributor and key member of my MTV generation.  With hit after hit, it was impossible to ignore Houston’s magical voice.

On the eve of the 2012 Grammy awards, which she won six during her career amongst several other nominations, it was shocking – unnerving, really – to hear about the death of Houston at the age of 48. Viola felt equally shocked.

By reading a portion of Houston’s bio, music fans get a bigger picture of her achievements:

With over 170 million combined album, singles and videos sold worldwide during her career with Arista Records, Whitney Houston has established a benchmark for superstardom that will quite simply never be eclipsed in the modern era. She is a singer’s singer who has influenced countless other vocalists female and male.

Music historians cite Whitney’s record-setting achievements: the only artist to chart seven consecutive #1 Billboard Hot 100 hits (“Saving All My Love For You,” “How Will I Know,” “Greatest Love Of All,” “I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me),” “Didn’t We Almost Have It All,” “So Emotional,” and “Where Do Broken Hearts Go”); the first female artist to enter the Billboard 200 album chart at #1 (her second album, Whitney, 1987); and the only artist with seven consecutive multi-platinum albums (Whitney Houston, Whitney, I’m Your Baby Tonight, The Bodyguard, Waiting To Exhale, and The Preacher’s Wife soundtracks, and My Love Is Your Love).

In fact, The Bodyguard soundtrack is one of the top 10 biggest-selling albums of all-time (at 17x-platinum in the U.S. alone), and Whitney’s career-defining version of Dolly Parton‘s “I Will Always Love You” is the biggest-selling U.S. single of all-time (at 4x-platinum). (Source: WhitneyHouston.com)

It’s no secret that Houston had problems with substance abuse for many years, and I think many are waiting for the confirmation that a drug overdose was the cause of her timely death.  Many hoped that she would make a comeback, but she failed to do so as she struggled to remain sober and return to her early musical form.

During the Grammy later this evening, Jennifer Hudson is expected to perform a Whitney Houston tribute, according to Billboard.

The music world lost a music icon. She will be missed.

Once the news hit, Twitter and social network lit up…   Below is a Storify with Tweets from celebrities reacting to the news.

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